Investigation probes three scenarios in fatal Zhytomyr plane crash that claimed lives of 3
Photo: Public

The investigation is studying three versions of the events that led to the collision of two L-39 combat training aircraft in the Zhytomyr Oblast and, as a result, the death of three pilots, communications adviser of the State Bureau of Investigation Tetiana Sapyan said on the air of the national telethon. 

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According to her, experts from the General Staff of the Armed Forces and the Air Force Command will be involved in the investigation.

"Currently, the investigation will consider versions such as: technical malfunction of the planes, pilot error, and the third version – violations during the organization of flights," Sapyan said.

Preliminary findings suggest the disaster occurred when the two planes collided during a turning maneuver, according to circumstances established earlier.

"This is important. We received fresh information from the investigators, which complements our information space," the SBI advisor emphasized.

On Friday, the crews of two L-39 combat training aircraft collided in the sky during a combat mission in Zhytomyr Oblast. Three pilots died – captain Andriy Pilshchykov with the call sign "Juice" and two majors V'yacheslav Minka and Serhiy Prokazin.

"Juice" flew on a MiG-29 fighter. After the start of the full-scale war between Russia and Ukraine, he defended the sky over Kyiv. In an interview with Western media, he called for the transfer of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine.

The State Bureau of Investigation announced that it is investigating the disaster in Zhytomyr Oblast. The technical condition of the aircraft and compliance with the rules of preparation for flights will be analyzed with special attention. Specialists will carry out a thorough diagnosis of "black boxes".