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Ural Airlines Flight 178 was a regularly scheduled passenger flight between Moscow and Simferopol. The Airbus A321-211 operating the flight struck birds right after takeoff from Zhukovsky International Airport in Moscow and was forced to make an emergency landing in a cornfield. All 233 occupants survived with 74 people receiving minor injuries. The flight crew was given the honorary title of Hero of the Russian Federation for their safe landing.
The aircraft was an Airbus A321-221 registered in Bermuda as VQ-BOZ. It was built in 2003 for MyTravelAirways (as G-OMYA) who decided not to accept it. The Airbus was then transferred to Cyprus Turkish Airlines as TC-KTD. It then operated for AtlasGlobal as TC-ETR in 2010 and Solaris Airlines in 2011 as EI-ERU. Ural Airlines received the A321-211 in 2011 as VQ-BOZ.
The aircraft was powered by two CFM56-5 engines.
The aircraft was damaged beyond repair in the accident.
The flight crew consisted of two members: Damir Yusupov and Georgy Murzin.
Captain Yusupov (41) graduated from the Buguruslan Flight School of Civil Aviation in Buguruslan, Russia in 2013. He also received a degree in Air Navigation from the Ulyanovsk Institute of Civil Aviation in Ulyanovsk, Russia. At the time of the accident, he had over 3.000 hours of flight time.
Georgy Murzin (23) also graduated from the Buguruslan Flight School of Civil Aviation in Buguruslan, Russia in 2017. At the time of the accident, he had over 600 hours of flight time.
Ural Airlines Flight 178
The Airbus A321-211 suffered a bird strike shortly after takeoff from Zhukovsky International Airport in Moscow, Russia.
After the two bird strikes, the pilots decided to shut down both engines and opted to make an emergency landing in a cornfield. The aircraft made a hard landing 2.8nmi away from Zhukovsky International Airport.
The gear was not lowered.
Everyone on board survived. 74 injuries were counted. All passengers were offered P100,000 ($1,714) as compensation.
Illegal Waste Dumps
The proliferation of birds near the airport has been attributed to illegal waste dumps. The deployed bird control measures are insufficient and a court case in 2012 found the dumps could threaten human lives.
In 2019, Zhukovsky air traffic controller declared:
We issue warnings to every departing aircraft. The birds come to sit on the runway — there's the river and the dump nearby, so they're here constantly.
The Interstate Aviation Committee opened an investigation into the accident. Rosaviatsiya, the British Air Accidents Investigation Branch and the French Bureau d'Enquetes et d'Analyses pour la Securite de l'Aviation Civile also participated in the investigation.
The CVR and FDR have been successfully recovered.
Damir Yusupov and Georgy Murzin were awarded the Hero Of The Russian Federation title. The other crew members were decorated with the Order of Courage.