Five officials charged in connection with interior ministry helicopter crash
The state bureau of investigation of Ukraine, DBR, has charged five state emergency service officials in connection with a helicopter crash in January, where the leadership of the interior ministry died.
On the morning of 18 January 2023, Ukrainian interior minister Denys Monastyrskyi and other officials died in a helicopter crash in the town of Brovary, in the Kyiv region, en route for a visit to eastern regions.
In the crash, 14 people died, including one child, and 31 people were injured, including 13 children.
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According to DBR, the suspected officials, including the head of aviation and air search and rescue department and his deputy, violated flight safety rules, which resulted in the catastrophe.
The investigators also reconstructed the crash minute by minute, including by decoding the black boxes.
They established that in January 2023, state emergency service officials employed a rescue missions helicopter for transporting top interior ministry officials. The helicopter in question had no permits for other types of flights.
In addition, the crew commander was not informed of the meteorological data along the entire route of the planned movement, including the "extremely unfavourable" weather conditions over the city of Brovary, in the Kyiv region, where the crash took place.
The crew itself did not have the appropriate permits to fly in difficult weather conditions and the necessary certificates, DBR adds.
Per the investigation, the helicopter was forced to fly at an extremely low altitude, even lower than the height of the buildings on the route. When the crew commander saw a multi-storey building in front, he tried to circumvent it, but the helicopter abruptly went up, and the crew lost control of it.
The five suspected state emergency service officials, charged with violating safety rules and negligence, now face up to 10 years of imprisonment.