ORENBURG, February 18. /TASS/. Russia’s airline has awarded the crew who saved lives of more than 300 people last week by safely landing a Boeing in the Dominican Republic after an engine failure, a TASS correspondent reported on Thursday.
"The crew coped with the emergency situation brilliantly. We express gratitude of all our personnel to you for your courage, cold blood and professionalism. Thank you for your self-control. You took the only right decision to return to the airport," the director general of Orenair, Viktor Zyukin, told the ceremony.
The Boeing 777-200 aircraft, with 355 passengers and 20 crew members onboard, made an emergency landing at the Punta Cana International Airport in the Dominican Republic on February 11 after a technical failure of an engine.
Some 15 minutes into the flight at the altitude of 6,000 meters there was a clap sound and smoke developed in the cabin. Captain Konstantin Parikozha switched off the failed engine and decided to return to the airport. The passengers were later evacuated with the use of an inflatable slide.
A special commission is investigating the circumstances of the incident.
Parikozha and second pilot Igor Kravtsov were awarded $13,000 and $10,600, respectively, while co-pilots Andrey Kartahsov and Dmitry Alkeyev received bonuses of up to $4,000.