Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, several sanction were imposed on the country. As a result of that, pilots of regional airlines are being instructed to carry out maintenance of their own aircraft, Newsweek reported. Oleg Bocharov, Russia’s deputy minister of Industry and Trade, made the statement earlier this month at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok.
“Together with the Ministry of Transport, we must train and certify pilots as universal fighters. They must simultaneously be pilots and aircraft technicians. And the equipment should provide for the possibility of field repairs in operation,” Bocharov had said.
“We are talking about pilots, primarily of regional aviation, for which a fundamentally new system for maintaining the airworthiness of new types of domestic regional aircraft should be created,” he said.
Western sanctions have badly hit the Russian aviation industry, with US, European Union (EU), UK and Canada banning Russian airlines from their airspaces. Aeroflot, Russia’s flagship carrier, had to even suspend all international flights, except to Belarus.
In what EU claims is a decision not influenced by the Ukraine invasion, it added 21 Russian airlines to its Air Safety List in April, which prevents them from operating in its territory on “safety grounds”.
(With inputs from agencies)