Aviation Accidents And Incidents In The Soviet Union

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1950 Sverdlovsk air disaster
The Sverdlovsk air disaster of January 5th, 1950 was an airplane crash where all 19 of those on board were killed, including almost the entire national ice hockey team (VVS Moscow) of the Soviet Air Force - 11 players, as well as a team doctor and a masseur. The team was on board a twin-engined Lisunov Li-2 transport aircraft, a licensed Soviet-built version of the DC-3, heading to a match against the Dynamo Moscow hockey club.
1960 U 2 incident
The 1960 U-2 incident occurred during the Cold War on 1 May 1960, during the presidency of Dwight Eisenhower and during the leadership of Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, when a United States U-2 spy plane was shot down over the airspace of the Soviet Union. The United States government at first denied the plane's purpose and mission, but then was forced to admit its role as a covert surveillance aircraft when the Soviet government produced its intact remains and surviving pilot, Francis Gary Powers, as well as photos of military bases in Russia taken by Powers.
1963 Aeroflot Tupolev Tu 124 Neva river ditching
The 1963 Aeroflot Tupolev Tu-124 Neva river ditching was a notable case of water landing that occurred in the Soviet Union in 1963. A Tupolev Tu-124 of Soviet state airline Aeroflot (Moscow division) took off from Tallinn-Ülemiste Airport (TLL) at 08:55 on 21 August 1963 with 45 passengers and 7 crew on board. The aircraft (registration number SSSR-45021) was built in 1962 and was scheduled to fly to Moscow-Vnukovo (VKO) under command of 27 year-old captain Victor Mostovoy.
1971 Surgut Aeroflot Antonov An 12 crash
The 1971 Surgut Aeroflot Antonov An-12 crash occurred on 22 January 1971, when an Aeroflot Antonov An-12B, registered CCCP-11000, flying from Tsentralny Airport, Omsk, in the Soviet Union's Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic (RSFSR), crashed 15km (9.3 mi) short of the runway on approach to Surgut International Airport, Surgut, RSFSR. An investigation found the aircraft's ice protection system was ineffective because the engine bleed air valves were closed during the flight; ice therefore built up on the aircraft causing it to go out of control.
1978 Iranian Chinook shootdown
The 1978 Iranian Chinook shootdown was an incident on June 21, 1978, when four Boeing CH-47 Chinook of the Imperial Iranian Air Force strayed into Soviet airspace during a training mission, with the end result being that two of the aircraft were shot down by the PVO.
1979 Dniprodzerzhynsk mid air collision
The 1979 Dniprodzerzhynsk mid-air collision occurred on 11 August 1979 when two Aeroflot Tupolev Tu-134s collided over the Ukrainian SSR, near Dniprodzerzhynsk.
1991 Azerbaijani Mil Mi 8 shootdown
The 1991 Azerbaijan MI-8 helicopter shootdown occurred on November 20, 1991, when an Azerbaijani MI-8 military helicopter, carrying peacekeeping mission team consisting of 13 Azerbaijani government officials, 2 Russian and 1 Kazakhstani Ministry of Internal Affairs officials, 3 Azerbaijani journalists and 3 helicopter crew was shot down by Armenian military forces near the Karakend village of Khojavend district in Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan. All 22 people (19 passengers and 3 crew) on board were killed in the crash.


Aeroflot Flight 1491
Aeroflot Flight 1491 was a scheduled domestic passenger flight on 18 May 1972 that crashed while descending to land in Kharkov, SSSR. All 122 passengers and crew on board were killed.
Aeroflot Flight 1691
Aeroflot Flight 1691 crashed after a false fire warning near Moscow Vnukovo Airport.
Aeroflot Flight 217
Aeroflot Flight 217 was a non-scheduled international passenger flight from Paris-Orly Airport to Sheremetyevo International Airport in Moscow, with a stopover at the Pulkovo Airport (at the time called Shosseynaya Airport) in Saint Petersburg (at the time called Leningrad). On 13 October 1972, the Ilyushin Il-62 crashed on approach to Sheremetyevo, with the loss of all 164 passengers and crew of 10. At the time, it was the world's worst aviation disaster.
Aeroflot Flight 244
Aeroflot Flight 244 was the scene of the first successful aircraft hijacking in the Soviet Union on 15 October 1970 when the Lithuanian citizen Pranas Brazinskas and his son Algirdas seized an An-24 domestic passenger plane en route from Batumi, Adjar ASSR, Georgian SSR, to Sukhumi and Krasnodar to defect to the West. In a shootout with guards on board, 19-year-old air-hostess Nadezhda Kurchenko was killed and several members of the crew were wounded.
Aeroflot Flight 3352
Aeroflot Flight 3352 was a Tupolev Tu-154 airline flight on a domestic route from Krasnodar to Novosibirsk, with an intermediate landing in Omsk, in the USSR. While landing at Omsk Airport on 11 October 1984, the aircraft crashed into maintenance vehicles on the runway, killing 174 people on board and 4 on the ground.
Aeroflot Flight 3932
Aeroflot Flight 3932 was a flight operated by Aeroflot from Koltsovo Airport, Sverdlovsk, Soviet Union to Omsk Tsentralny Airport, Soviet Union. On 30 September 1973 a Tupolev Tu-104 operating on the route crashed shortly after takeoff from Sverdlovsk, killing all 108 passengers and crew on board.
Aeroflot Flight 411
Aeroflot Flight 411 was a four-engined Ilyushin Il-62 that was departing Sheremetyevo Airport, Moscow on a flight to Senegal when it crashed and was destroyed by fire shortly after take-off. The flightcrew had engine fire warning illuminated shortly after take-off and the pilot shut down both engines and tried to return to Sheremetyevo Airport.
Aeroflot Flight 4227
Aeroflot Flight 4227 was a Tupolev Tu-154B-2 that was a domestic scheduled passenger flight from Alma-Ata Airport in Soviet Kazakhstan to Simferopol Airport in Soviet Ukraine on July 7, 1980. The aircraft reached an altitude of no more than 500 feet when the airspeed suddenly dropped because of thermal currents it encountered during the climb out, causing the airplane to stall before traveling 5 km (3.1 mi) away, crash and catch fire.
Aeroflot Flight 505
Aeroflot Flight 505 crashed after take-off in Tashkent. Flight 505 was an early morning flight from Tashkent to Shahrisabz, both in the Uzbek SSR, now Uzbekistan.
Aeroflot Flight 6833
Aeroflot Flight 6833, en route from Tbilisi, Georgian SSR, to Leningrad, Russian SFSR, with an intermediate stop in Batumi, was the scene of an attempted aircraft hijacking by seven young Georgians on 18-19 November 1983. The crisis ended with a storming of the Tu-134A airliner by Soviet special forces that resulted in eight dead. The surviving hijackers were subsequently tried and executed.
Aeroflot Flight 7425
Aeroflot Flight 7425 refers to a Tupolev Tu-154B-2, registration CCCP-85311, that was operating a domestic scheduled Tashkent–Karshi–Orenburg–Leningrad passenger service under the airline's Uzbekistan division, that crashed near Uchkuduk, Uzbek SSR, Soviet Union, while en route its second leg. The crash killed all 200 occupants on board.
Aeroflot Flight 8381
Aeroflot Flight 8381 was the designation on a scheduled flight of a two-engined Tupolev Tu-134 which departed Tallinn Airport in Estonia, at 10:38 am on 3 May 1985, for Chişinău in Moldova, making a stopover at Lviv, Ukraine. While descending to Lviv in overcast weather, it collided at 12:13 with a Soviet Air Force Antonov An-26 (callsign SSSR-26492, Russian: СССР-26492) which had just taken off from Lviv.
Aeroflot Flight 902
Aeroflot/Far East Flight 902 was a flight on scheduled domestic service from Khabarovsk to Moscow with intermediate stops at Irkutsk and Omsk in the Soviet Union. The flight was operated by a Tu-104A aircraft.
Aeroflot Flight 964
Aeroflot Flight 964 was a flight operated by Aeroflot from Kutaisi Airport, Georgia to Domodedovo Airport, Moscow, Russia. On 13 October 1973 a Tupolev Tu-104 operating on the route crashed during its approach to Moscow, killing all 122 passengers and crew on board.
Austrian Airlines Flight 901
Austrian Airlines Flight 901 was a flight from Vienna, Austria to Moscow, USSR (now Russia) via Warsaw, Poland. On the night of 26 September 1960 the aircraft operating the flight, a Vickers Viscount, crashed near Moscow while on its approach to land, killing 31 of the 37 passengers and crew on board.


Balkan Bulgarian Airlines Flight 307
Balkan Bulgarian Airlines Flight LZ307 was a scheduled international passenger flight from Sofia, Bulgaria, to Moscow in the Soviet Union, that crashed on its final approach to Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport on 3 March 1973, killing all 25 passengers and crew on board.


Catalina affair
The Catalina affair was an incident on June 13, 1952, when a Swedish military Douglas DC-3A-360 Skytrain flying over the Baltic Sea carrying out signals intelligence gathering operations for the Swedish National Defence Radio Establishment (FRA), disappeared east of the isle of Gotska Sandön. Three days later, two Swedish military Catalina flying boats searched for the DC-3 north of Estonia.


Dymshits–Kuznetsov hijacking affair
The Dymshits–Kuznetsov aircraft hijacking affair or The First Leningrad Trial (Russian: Ленинградское самолётное дело, or Дело группы Дымшица-Кузнецова) (Leningrad Process) was an attempt to steal a civilian aircraft on 15 June 1970 by a group of 16 Soviet refuseniks in order to escape to the West. Even though the attempt was unsuccessful, this was a notable event in the course of the Cold War because it drew international attention to human rights violations in the USSR and resulted in temporary loosening of emigration restrictions.


Japan Airlines Flight 446
Japan Airlines Flight 446 was a Japan Airlines flight from Sheremetyevo International Airport of Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union to Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) in Ōta, Tokyo, Japan. On November 28, 1972 the DC-8-62 on the route crashed during the initial climb phase upon takeoff from Sheremetyevo.


Korean Air Lines Flight 902
Korean Air Lines Flight 902 (KAL902, KE902) was the flight number of a civilian airliner that was shot down April 20, 1978, near Murmansk, USSR, after it violated Soviet airspace and allegedly failed to respond to Soviet interceptors. Tapes released by Rovaniemi Area Control Centre show that the pilots of KAL902 transmitted their call sign three times immediately prior to the shootdown.


Mathias Rust
Mathias Rust (born 1 June 1968) is a German aviator known for his illegal landing near Red Square in Moscow on May 28, 1987. An amateur pilot, he flew from Finland to Moscow, being tracked several times by Soviet air defence and interceptors. The Soviet fighters never received permission to shoot him down, and several times he was mistaken for a friendly aircraft.


Osoaviakhim 1
Osoaviakhim-1 was a record-setting, hydrogen-filled Soviet high-altitude balloon designed to seat a crew of three and perform scientific studies of the Earth's stratosphere. On January 30, 1934, on its maiden flight which lasted over 7 hours, the balloon reached an altitude of 22,000 metres (72,000 ft).


Seaboard World Airlines Flight 253A
Seaboard World Airlines Flight 253A was a military charter flight carrying 214 American troops bound for South Vietnam. On July 1, 1968, the plane was intercepted by Soviet jets after it unintentionally violated Soviet airspace.
SSSR-V6 OSOAVIAKhIM (Russian: СССР-В6 ОСОАВИАХИМ) was a semi-rigid airship constructed as part of the Soviet airship program, and designed by the Italian engineer and airship designer Umberto Nobile. The airship was named after the Soviet organisation OSOAVIAKhIM.


Tupolev ANT 20
The Tupolev ANT-20 Maxim Gorky (Russian: Туполев АНТ-20 "Максим Горький") was a Soviet eight-engine aircraft, the largest of the 1930s. Its wingspan was similar to that of a modern Boeing 747.

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