MOSCOW, September 14. /TASS/. The Interstate Aviation Committee, an air crash investigation authority for Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States, has prepared an interim report about its investigation into last month’s belly-landing of an Airbus A-321 plane on a corn field near Moscow.
An IAC source told TASS that preliminary investigation confirmed the initial version of engine failure as a result of multiple bird strikes.
"The intermediate report is ready. It confirms the main version of the air incident - birds were sucked in both engines, causing a power system failure and the loss of takeoff thrust," the source said.
The report will be published in coming days, the source added.
The document was compiled by experts in air crash investigation and includes "analysis of the flight, the aircraft’s condition, a protocol of actions of the crew and ground services, [a readout of] the crew’s conversation with air traffic controllers, response by rescue and firefighting teams," the source said.
It also contains operational flight safety advice for the management of the Zhukovsky airport, from where the plane took off.
The findings will be sent to the Russian Transport Ministry, Russia’s civil air transport watchdog Rosaviatsiya (Federal Air Transport Agency), Ural Airlines and the aircraft’s Ireland-based owner Royal Flight Limited. The document will also be submitted to BEA, the air investigation body of France, where the plane and its engines were designed and manufactured.
On August 15, a Ural Airlines Airbus A321 with over 230 people aboard, including 41 children, was heading to the Crimean city of Simferopol from Moscow when it struck a flock of birds shortly after the takeoff. Both of the aircraft’s engines sucked in some of them and caught fire. The crew managed to land the plane in a cornfield and evacuate all passengers.
According to latest updates, 76 people, including 19 children, received minor injuries during the crash-landing. Six people were taken to hospital.
On August 16, Russian President Vladimir Putin has bestowed the Hero of Russia titles on the two Ural Airlines pilots - first pilot Damir Yusupov and co-pilot Georgy Murzin. Other crewmembers have been awarded the Orders of Courage.