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MI-8 helicopter that went missing November 24 was in a good technical condition

26 ноября 2012, 23:59
MI-8 helicopter of Euro-Asia Air. Photo courtesy of eaa.kz
MI-8 helicopter of Euro-Asia Air. Photo courtesy of eaa.kz
Nurlan Yessenaliyev. Photo courtesy of mail.ru
Nurlan Yessenaliyev. Photo courtesy of mail.ru
The MI-8 helicopter bearing the side number 823 that went missing November 24 underwent regular checks and performed flying routs in Alakol district once every two weeks, Euro-Asia Air reps told a Tengrinews.kz journalist.

“The helicopter was regularly used to meet the Kazakhstan – Chinese pipeline’s needs. The vehicle was in a good technical condition (…) after an overhaul”, the Company’s representatives said, adding that all the crew members were employees of the Zhezkazgan-based branch of Euro-Asia Air, with Zhezkazgan being the starting point. Among those aboard were only employees of KazTranOil Oil Shipment Company and those of Kazakhstan-Chinese pipeline venture.

Earlier Tengrinews.kz ran the list of the helicopter crew members and people aboard:
Captain – Raul Khabibullin;
Pilot – Nurlan Yessenaliyev
Flight mechanic – Vladimir Kim
Engineers – Konstantin Maksayev and Viktor Radomskiy
Accompanying persons - T. Shokparov, A. Sarsembayev, K. Sabirov.

The helicopter flew off November 24 at 08.30 to fly over the Ushara-Dostyk section of the Atasu – Alashankow oil pipeline. At 12.30 the same day the contact with the helicopter was lost.

Euro-Asia Air is a subsidiary of KazMunaiGas National Oil and Gas Company. The Company owns a fleet of thirteen MI-8T helicopters, five Yak-40 aircraft, two AS-365N3 helicopters, one Challenger 850 aircraft and one Challenger 870, as well as two Agusta Westland 139 helicopters.

MI-8 helicopters are used for both civil and military purposes to transport cargoes of up to 3 000 kg. With the tanks full, the helicopter’s range can reach 800 km. The vehicle is powered with two engines, with either engine automatically shifting to its ultimate power in case of failure of any of the engines.

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