'Drunk' navigator blamed for Russian air crash in June

'Drunk' navigator blamed for Russian air crash in June

"The subordination of the captain to the navigator, who was in a state of agitation and slightly intoxicated," was a contributing factor to the accident, the report posted by CIS Interstate Aviation Committee (MAK) on its website said.

The Tu-134 plane of the US-registered RusAir airline was going to northern Karelia region's capital Petrozavodsk from Moscow, when it crash-landed on a highway near the airport in bad weather.

The probe report said the crew decided "not to go round for a second approach before landing as the plane was already below a "minimum safety altitude".
It also cited poor crew resource management (CRM) by the captain as a contributory factor.

Meanwhile, the MAK yesterday virtually confirmed the media report about "a blonde's error" as the cause of another air crash on September 7 in Yaroslavl, when the entire local ice hockey team was killed among the 44 people on board Yakovlev Yak-42 jet.

In its report published on yesterday on its website the probe authority said that even after the end of the runway the Yak-42 continued run on the ground for another 400 meters and failed to attain speed required for a smooth takeoff.

"Something was arresting its speed..." the MAK said.

Earlier last week 'Moskovsky Komsomolets' daily quoting a source close to the probe reported that due to the last minute change of roles of the captain and co-pilot of the aircraft carrying Lokomotiv ice hockey team, the crew failed to release parking break, similar to the an automobile's hand break.

In a professional driver's slang it is called a "blonde's error", when women drive away without releasing away the hand break.