CIS’ NTSB : flight safety “worsening” there

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Flight safety in CIS worsening, according to aviation authority report

A Russian passenger jet crashed near Moscow. All 71 people aboard are feared dead.

Russian authorities revoke Saratov Airlines AOC over unresolved safety issues

 Crew fatigue concerns behind Saratov grounding

“A check of flight assignments, flight log books, time sheets and other documents of flight crew members for March and April 2018 conducted by the Rosaviatsiya on May 26-27, found that violations at the airline are continuing and are of a systemic nature:

  • the airline carries out crew rostering without taking into account the normalization of working hours, the time of rest of flight personnel and the control of fatigue;
  • flight crew members deliberately do not observe the duty and rest times, and there is no proper control by the airline;
  • pilots are allowed to fly without a second medical examination, etc.

These conclusions led authorities to decided [sic] to revoke the airline’s AOC as of May 31, 2018.”

 Plane crashes in northern Russia, 2 people killed

IAC Report

More aircraft disasters and fatalities occurred in Russia than in any other Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) nation last year, according to a report by the bloc’s top civil aviation authority.

The report presented by the Interstate Aviation Committee reveals that the safety level of aircraft transport in the CIS demonstrated “stable negative dynamics” during 2017.




The paper’s authors noted that the absolute parameter of general flight safety was higher than in 2016, but also agreed that the relative index of accidents and disasters registered in 2017 was the worst since 2013.

According to the report, the 12 countries that comprise the CIS saw 58 aircraft incidents in 2017, including 32 aircraft disasters. In 2016, there were 63 such incidents and 28 disasters within the bloc. The number of human deaths was 74 in both 2017 and 2016.

Russia had the highest number of aircraft disasters and the number of individual fatalities. In 2017, the country had 39 aircraft incidents, including 20 disasters that saw 51 people killed. Ukraine had eight aircraft incidents that killed seven people, Kazakhstan had seven incidents with 11 dead, and Belarus, Moldova, Uzbekistan and Armenia had one incident each.

According to preliminary investigation results, over 80 percent of all aircraft incidents and disasters in 2017 were caused by human error, including three incidents that happened because pilots were under the influence of alcohol.

The authors of the report paid special attention to commercial passenger flights, saying that while the practice is becoming more widespread, airline operators continue to ignore safety issues while preparing and conducting flights. Among other safety violations they mentioned were pilots who have no working certificates, or pre-flight medical examinations, the use of aircraft without valid operating certificates, and the access of workers with low qualification to repair works.

The Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC) [Russian: Межгосударственный авиационный комитет] is the Commonwealth of Independent States’ equivalent in that it is  supervising body overseeing the use and management of civil aviation, the Air Accident Investigation Commission. Its report finding “stable negative dynamics”[1] during 2017.


The recent record of Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia) is not littered with a rash of crashes; there are two commercial fatal accidents noted above. It the government body charged with the regulation and oversight of aviation in the Russian Federation. “Its responsibilities include the rendering of government services, management of government assets in the air transport sector, air space management, aviation safety and security as well as regulatory oversight and licensing approval.” (quote from its website). Rosaviatsia reports to the Ministry of Transport

State Civil Aviation Authority of Russia – SCAA with Alexander Neradko, First Deputy Minister of Transport /Head of State Civil Aviation Authority responsible for supervision of the CIS CAA.

Though there are several references to “transparency” in the CIS websites, it is difficult to navigate them to find hard data[2]; so, there is no visible data to confirm or deny the IAC conclusion. Maybe it is internecine political warfare within the Kremlin.


If it is any consolation, both the FAA and ICAO place Rosaviatsia within the acceptable range.

International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) Program

ICAO Safety Audit Results: USOAP 

The assessment of another sovereign by the FAA and an audit by a Member Nation by ICAO may be blurred by the lenses of diplomacy. Perhaps a more reliable “good housekeeping seal of approval of foreign carriers[3] may derive from their participation in one of the global airline alliances.


[1] How is that for dissembling? Could qualify for a DC spinmeister!!! Maybe it is a matter of translation.

[2] Winston Churchill “Russia is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”
[3] Aeroflot is a member of SKYTEAM


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