The crew of the Boeing-737-500 that crashed in Kazan have never performed the maneuver of a repeated landing attempt in a real flight, Tatarstan Airline CEO Aksan Giniyatullin told reporters Tuesday.
"I do not think so," Giniyatullin said at a press conference in response to a question of whether the aircraft captain had practiced the maneuver before.
When trying to land the plane on Sunday night, about 500 meters before the runway, pilot Rustem Salikhov informed the ground crew of "non-landing configuration" of the aircraft and the intention to improve the situation by making a second attempt to land. While gaining altitude, the pilots exceeded the allowable angle of attack, and the aircraft went into a spin, hit the ground and burst into flames.
It was also reported that Rustem Salikhov and his assistant Victor Gutsul were inexperienced pilots. Salikhov started practicing three years ago having retrained from a navigator; Gutsul retrained from a flight engineer in 2011.
Nevertheless, Tatarstan Airline insists that the crew had the necessary experience to control the aircraft of this class. According to the head of the airline, Aksan Giniyatullin, the captain of the crashed aircraft had the experience of 2.5 thousand flight hours; the co-pilot had 1.9 thousand hours. Earlier, spokespeople for the airline also stressed that the crew had undergone all necessary training.