Russia helicopter crash: Pilot dead and another injured after aircraft hits the ground during International Army Games air show

The surviving pilot said he believed the aircraft's hydraulics system failed

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The Independent Online

A Russian military helicopter has crashed during an aerobatic display, killing one pilot and injuring another.

The Mi-28 gunship was performing alongside other helicopters at the International Army Games show at the Dubrovichi firing range in Ryazan, around 170 km (105 miles) southeast of Moscow, when it crashed, according to the Russia Defence Ministry.

Footage of the incident which was broadcast on Russian state TV shows four gunships performing stunts and firing flares, before one helicopter spins down, hits the ground and explodes.


The pilot who survived the crash was in a satisfactory condition, the ministry said. He told officials he believed the crash was caused by the failure of the aircraft’s hydraulic system.

There was no further damage on the ground, officials added, and emphasised that the crowd watching the International Army Games air show was never in a position of danger as the flights were conducted at a safe distance.

Viktor Bondarev, the chief of the Russian air force, ordered that the remainder of the Mi-28 fleet be investigated.

Mi-28s are two-seat attack helicopters, which replaced Soviet-built gunships in Russia’s fleet. The models have been sold to other countries including Iraq and Kenya.

The International Army started on 1 August, and will last for two weeks. Azerbaijan, Angola, Armenia, Belarus, China, Egypt, India, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Serbia, Tajikistan, Venezuela, and Russia, will compete to test their military skills on land and in the air, during events including the tank biathlon, Sputnik News reported.

Additional reporting by AP

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