As Igor Shevchuk, the President of the Tupolev design bureau, said during a press conference on the 30th anniversary of the appearance of TU-154 airplanes in the skies, the safety of these Russian airliners is no lower than the average standards of foreign air companies. As statistics go, Mr. Shevchuk continued, since 1972, of 930 TU-154s only 29 crashed. 'Just once mechanical failure was the cause of the accident. On other 28 occasions, the planes crashed because of human error, bad weather or the insufficiency of fuel'. Today, 646 TU-154s still fly, one third of them in countries throughout the world.
Tupolev's President also denied that Iran was about to stop using TU-154s. Despite that a TU-154 crashed while in flight from Tehran to Khorramabad, 105 passengers and 12 crew lost, Iran intends to continue cooperating with Tupolev and buy two more TU-154s.
An explosion of household gas occurred in a nine-storeyed apartment building in the city of Shakhty, the Rostov region of Russia. The blast destroyed two storeys of the building