Antonov An-124 Suffers Uncontained Engine Failure And Landing Gear Snaps

An Antonov An-124 operated by Volga-Dnepr had a double catastrophe today, ending in a runway excursion. The Antonov suffered an uncontained engine failure shortly after take-off from Novosibirsk in Russia and returned to the airport to make an emergency landing. Upon landing, the aircraft overran the runway, causing the nose gear to snap. All 14 people onboard are said to be safe and well.

Volga-dnepr an-124
An Antonov An-124 has skidded off a runway following an uncontained engine failure. Photo: Getty Images
Volga-dnepr an-124
An Antonov An-124 has skidded off a runway following an uncontained engine failure. Photo: Getty Images

An-124 has a typical Friday 13th

For Volga-Dnepr, Friday 13th has already lived up to its name, as one of its aircraft has been seriously damaged in an incident in Russia. The An-124, registered RA-82042, was on its way to Vienna from Seoul. Having made an overnight positioning stop in Novosibirsk (OVB), the aircraft was prepped and ready to depart for Vienna, completing the second leg of flight VI4066.

Onboard were 14 people. The aircraft departed on Novosibirsk’s runway 25 at just after midday local time and began its ascent. At around 1800 feet MSL, all contact with the aircraft was lost, with both transponder and radio communications failed.

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Video footage of the aircraft shows it making a turn back towards the airport with smoke trailing from at least one engine.

The aircraft can be seen coming in for an emergency landing in the video below.

The aircraft struggled to slow down, overshooting the end of the runway by some measure. As the plane plowed into the snow, the nosegear snapped, leaving it nose down on the ground.

All 14 people evacuated the aircraft safely. However, the Antonov suffered heavy damage in the incident.

A lucky escape on the ground

In what appears to have been an uncontained engine failure, parts of the plane’s cowling and fragments of the engine fell to the ground as the aircraft circled to make its emergency landing. The missing cowling from engine number 2 was found in a field.

One part fell from the plane around two nautical miles away from the airport and crashed through the roof of a warehouse. The building was damaged, but nobody on the ground was hurt.

According to the Aviation Herald, there was heavy damage to the Antonov as a result of the incident. The fractured turbine caused damage to its wing, with the inboard left wings slats and also parts of the left side of the fuselage penetrated by debris.

West Siberia’s Transport Prosecution Office has opened an investigation into the accident. A statement on its website reads,

“The Novosibirsk Investigation Department of the West Siberian SUT of the Investigative Committee of Russia is conducting a pre-investigation check under Part 1 of Art. 263 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (violation of traffic safety rules and the operation of air transport).

“An investigative team is currently inspecting the scene, including the aircraft and other verification activities aimed at establishing all the circumstances of the incident.”

RA-82042 is a 31-year-old Antonov an-124, which has been in operation with Volga-Dnepr since July 1991.