No one was critically hurt during the successful wheels-down emergency landing of a Russian passenger airliner with 170 people on board in a field on Tuesday, according to officials.
The Ural Airlines Airbus A320 was en route from the Black Sea resort of Sochi to Omsk in eastern Siberia when the crew reported a hydraulic system issue and asked permission to land at Novosibirsk’s Tolmachevo Airport, which has a longer runway.
The pilots chose to land in a field approximately 200 kilometers (125 miles) west of Novosibirsk after realizing they did not have enough fuel to make it, according to Ural Airlines Director General Sergei Skuratov.
No one was wounded, according to officials, but two passengers needed medical attention for hypertension, and numerous others had examinations for minor bruising.
A video of a jet in a field without any obvious signs of damage was shown in Russian media, and there were quotes from passengers complimenting the crew’s professionalism and poise.
Sergei Belov, the 32-year-old pilot, was descended from pilots through his father and grandparents.
The emergency landing is the subject of an inquiry by Russian prosecutors. In light of the sanctions put in place by the U.S. and its allies due to Russia’s military activity in Ukraine, Skuratov denied claims that they were the result of subpar jet maintenance.
Among other constraints, the sanctions prohibited the transfer of spare plane parts from the West.
The CEO of Ural Airlines emphasized that, despite the penalties, the fleet’s safety has been maintained.
In 2019, 74 of the 233 people on board an A321 that also belonged to Ural Airlines were injured when the aircraft made an emergency landing in a field close to Moscow after hitting birds during takeoff.
State honors were given to the crew.