As the Tu-154 passenger airliner was making a regular flight from Polyarny in Yakutia to Moscow Domodedovo airport, its power system, navigation equipment and radio communications failed in mid-flight.
The pilots made an emergency landing in a military airfield, not adapted to this type of aircraft, in Izhma, the Komi Republic. There were 72 passengers and nine crew members on board the aircraft, and no one was hurt.
For courage and heroism in the line of duty in extreme conditions, pilots Andrei Lamanov and Evgeny Novoselov were awarded the title of the Hero of Russia. Other crew members were awarded the Order of Courage.
The request to Dmitry Medvedev to recognise the crew’s achievement came from the airliner’s passengers.
President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Good afternoon, friends,
Today I would like to present state decorations to the Tu-154 crew, which made an unprecedented emergency landing in Izhma. All of the airliner’s crew members are present here today, as well as their families. I am very pleased to see you and would like to say once again that our country is proud of you.
”What is most important, you saved the lives of your passengers and fulfilled your professional duty with honour.“
You were able to make an emergency landing in the middle of the taiga forest, at an old military airfield not adapted to this type of aircraft. You did everything in your power to land the jet, and you did it manually. What is most important, you saved the lives of your passengers and fulfilled your professional duty with honour.
You have excellent professional skills, which you proved spectacularly in that extraordinary situation. You have shown courage and bravery because you need courage even to make a decision in a situation when the airliner has no navigation system or power supply, and other systems are malfunctioning.
We can only guess what you felt at that moment, but one thing is clear: you have acted with professionalism, concentration and clarity. As a result, not only did you successfully land the aircraft but also prevented a panic on board, which is also of paramount importance.
Now I will call out the names of all those present here, but I would like to begin with the crew members who have been awarded the title of Hero of Russia: the first pilots of the Tu-154, first-rank aviators Andrei Lamanov and Evgeny Novoselov. They have unprecedented skills, perfect flying technique and have logged over 10,000 hours of flying.
The Order of Courage will be awarded to flight engineer Rafik Karimov, navigator Sergei Talalayev and flight attendants Vasily Vyrodov, Nikolai Dmitriyev, Elena Dmitriyeva, Rifkat Nizamov and Elena Razumova.
My congratulations to you all, twice for Ms Razumova: you had your birthday on November 13, so congratulations on both occasions.
Let us begin the awards ceremony.