Experts in the USA consider the Tu-154 as an entirely reliable aeroplane and believe that a technical malfunction could hardly have been responsible for last night's tragedy in Germany.
According to Paul Duffy, who writes for the aviation publication Air Transport World, the Tu-154 has been the mainstay air carrier for the countries in the former USSR for the last 25 years. According to his evidence, more than 900 planes of this model have been manufactured, while there are now 530 in use. About 28 planes have crashed in this time, but not for technical reasons.
Until June last year, only two Tu-154 crashes were put down to technical failures, and in terms of numbers of crashes the Tu-154 is comparable to the Boeing 727. Out of 1,600 Boeing 727s, 68 have been involved in crashes, the expert stressed.
As far as the 757 is concerned, 7 disasters with loss of life have been recorded in the last 12 years. The plane first appeared in 1978. As a result of these crashes, not including the two planes hijacked on September 11th, 469 people lost their lives.