Home » Aviation » Tu-95 Bear Bomber Crashes Near Russia’s Border With China


Tu-95 Bear Bomber Crashes Near Russia’s Border With China

A Russian Tupolev Tu-95 Bear 'H' off the coast of Scotland in 2014. UK Royal Air Force Photo

A Russian Tupolev Tu-95 Bear ‘H’ off the coast of Scotland in 2014. UK Royal Air Force Photo

A Russian Air Force strategic bomber has crashed outside the city of Khabarovsk, near the Chinese border, according to a Tuesday statement from the Russian Ministry of Defense via local media.

The Tupolev Tu-95MS Bear bomber went down during a training flight about 50 miles away from the headquarters of the Russian Eastern Military District, according to the statement provided to the TASS wire service..

“On July 14 at 9:50 A.M. Moscow time [2:50 EST] the Tu-95MS aircraft crashed while performing a scheduled training flight some 80 kilometers from Khabarovsk. The crew ejected,” the ministry said.
“According to preliminary information, after a report by the crew’s commander about an emergency situation, the flight control head ordered the crew to leave the plane by parachutes. The search and rescue groups are looking for the plane’s crewmembers.”

According to TASS, a search mission is underway composed of Antonov An-12 and two Mil Mi-8 helicopters to locate the seven missing crew.

As a assault of the crash, the Russian Air Force has grounded the Tu-95MS. Early reports suggest a technical problem resulted in engine failure of the Bear.

The crash is the latest in a spate of Russian Air Force crashes. A Tu-95 Bear suffered a burning engine on June 8

“On June 4, two accidents occurred in the Russian Air Force: the MiG-29 fighter jet crashed near the Ashuluk range, and in Voronezh the Su-34 bomber flipped over whilst landing. The pilots in both cases survived,” reported TASS.

“On July 3, the MiG-29 fighter jet fell near Krasnodar, the pilot managed to eject, and on July 6 the SU-24 crashed in the Khabarovsk territory, both pilots died.”

Russian air assets have been operating much more frequently since the seizure of the Crimean region of Ukraine in March 2014.

“Clearly [there’s] a linkage between the increased tempo of military operations undertaken over the last year and a half and the increased spate of accidents for military aircraft,” Paul Schwartz, with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told Defense News earlier this week.
“It’s clearly taking a turn upwards.”

Variants of the prop driven Tu-95 has been in service with the Russian Air Force since the mid-1950s and have been seen as far afield as Alaska and the U.K. within the last year.

  • sinisterfalcon007

    Can some body tell Putin that his bravado is causing the death of innocent servicemen who are forced to fly a plane whose tech is based upon 1940’s era.

    • NavySubNuke

      I’m sure someone can – I am curious though why you think he should be told that. I don’t mean to sound like a jerk but I doubt the death of a few pilots/crewman are going to have that big of an impact on his decision making processes.
      I am just waiting to hear how Russian state media spins this to be the fault of the US since we are the source of all evil in the world or something like that.

      • shmiggle

        Just because you spin it that way doesn’t mean they will.

        • NavySubNuke

          True – it is always surprising what new and interesting ways the Russian media tries to spin things to make all of their problems the fault of others — as if people actually care about their dying nation.

          • gunnerv1

            State Controlled Media, almost like ours when the Media lobs Softball questions to the Democrats.

          • Secundius

            @ gunnerv1.

            As oppose to Nerf Ball questions to the Republicans…

          • gunnerv1

            No, as in the Total No Questions of Republicans/Conservatives. (Ignore them and maybe they’ll go away. Guess what, we ain’t going away, just like a Thorn in your side. I can’t wait for Rep. Gowdy to nail the Whore of Benghazi.).

          • Secundius

            @ gunnerv1.

            Hopefully, even there not that STUPID, to have a 15th Hearing. If anyone of them Want’s to See, Seek or Make Reelection…

          • gunnerv1

            I don’t think that Rep. Gowdy will have any problem being re-elected, on the other hand, Rep. Cummings is about to be indicted himself for interfering in the investigation that he investigating.

          • Seerightthere!

            To be fair the Republicans are pretty spineless and anything heavier than nerf would hurt them.

          • gunnerv1

            You obviously don’t watch C-SPAN in your little world, do you? It maybe boring in the long run, but when the fires are lit in the little snippets it becomes worth it. (I just watch the “High Lights”.)

          • Seerightthere!

            LOL why would anyone watch c-span? (lower case is intentional) Do you really need to watch kabuki to know it’s theatre? Fool.

          • gunnerv1

            Because it’s UNFILTERED “Fool”ISH DIPTARD! (I know, you get your earshit from msnbc (intentional Pond Scum case)

    • gunnerv1

      And how old do you think our B-52 fleet is (First Hint, 1940’s Tech.)? The Main Armament (Gun) on Modern Destroyers was developed from 1940’s Technologies (Solidstate “Hall Effect” (Magnetic) proximity switches) and replaced “Mechanical Contact” switches along with Solidstate Controls in the Gun Mount Drives (MK 42 and 45 systems) and the Associated Fire Control Systems (Mk 86).

      • sinisterfalcon007

        Yeah they don’t crash neither do they catch fire & they are thoroughly updated with modern avionics, communication systems, EW systems & modern weapons system which make them good for another 30 more years unlike this flying junk & wait for some more crashes in the coming days & weeks.

        • gunnerv1

          Our B 52 Fleet is being flown by the Grandchildren of the First Pilots. Our Bombers are Old and Rickety. The “Boneyard” in Arizona is doing a brisk business just keeping them in the air. We’ve even had a few B-2’s go down in flames (one barely made it off the ground at Anderson (Guam) Airfield). Everybody is flying junk. Our Junk uses the latest innovations whereas the Russians use old mechanical backups (Tried and True) (but I think we could still beat them in a “Slugging Match”).

      • Secundius

        @ gunnerv1.

        Guess again. First flight was in 1952 and Introduction in service in 1955. First Proposal for the B-52 program was in 1946, but ca cancelled because of Production Cost’s and Technologies that didn’t exist at the time…

        • gunnerv1

          BUT, it is still Technology that was developed in the 40’s. This stuff wasn’t just thought up overnight. i.e. The Transistor (first solid state component, 1947.).

          • Secundius

            @ gunnerv1.

            If you want to get technical, the First Transistor was introduced in 1907. The First “Crystal” Transistor was introduced in 1947. But, the First Solid State Transistor wasn’t introduced until 1954…

          • gunnerv1

            But it was on the “Drawing Board” PRIOR to the 50’s (That’s the Point I’m trying to make) We really haven’t “Invented” much by way of “Solid State” Electronics, what we have accomplished is “Miniaturization” (Cramming more into the same space).

    • Craig Wood

      B52 came from that same era.

    • Sefik Miladin je GAY

      these planes will be the thing u will be very scared off, if u even survive nuclear strike from ur cave phahahahaha

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  • muzzleloader

    my heart bleeds lol

  • Curtis Conway

    I hope India is paying attention. The Russian technology is not holding up, and they have a lot of it. In order for India to be the true regional power it desires to be, it must have efficient, reliable,and capable aircraft. Most of their tactical aircraft are of Russian design.

    • shmiggle

      American equipment did not hold up in Indian field tests this is why they chose Russian stuff. Its not like American air force safety record is spotless.

      • Curtis Conway

        When one does the most cursory review of flight hours vs. safety records (problems), one finds out these two organization are in the same universe operationally only by physical presence. American equipment is far better maintained and much safer, while accomplishing the mission,and most of our aircraft are multi-mission capable. The Blue Angels are a case in point. Our US Navy Flight Demonstration Team flies throw aways, and they do just fine.

        • shmiggle

          US hardware is “better maintained” because it has to be. It simply will not function without insane maintenance costs. This is one of the main reasons why many countries do not consider american hardware price competitive. How could it be price competitive with all of the crony lobbyism, corruption, no bid contracts, inflated costs and constant failure to at least stay under 200% budget overruns. And we all pay for this and think that spending (wasting) all this money while leaving our infrastructure in shambles is something to brag about. YAY! we spend more on planes, great. We spend more not because our stuff is better. We spend more because things cost more and our money is worth less every year. We also have more kids going hungry than any of our first world peers, we have terribly educated population, lack benefits while paying high taxes. Lets not get into the f35/f22 fiasco. There is nothing good to say about our military these days. it is not geared fr the realities of today’s needs.. Our military is in the same runaway bubble that our housing industry got into. While people brag and beat war drums, we are borrowing ourselves into oblivious while shoveling money into corporate welfare pockets who continuously fear monger our nation while constantly meddling in other countries business. Americans seem to be forgetting that economy is the best weapon these days and our “weapon” is running on borrowed time.

          • Curtis Conway

            Obviously you do NOT want to talk about aircraft readiness and safety numbers, of which the US Armed Forces lead. We have the greatest data base via the largest force, and the best ‘finite’ numbers. We have some the most professional maintainers on the planet and they do a super job!

          • shmiggle

            i posted a few links already of very recent US crashes of aircraft, it is currently in moderation because they don’t like links in comments I guess.. suffice to say, we lost more planes this year than russia and all the planes we lost are more modern and “superior” according to you.

          • Curtis Conway

            If your going to make a comparison you have to do better than that. The USAF operates roughly 5,137 aircraft. The Russian Air Forces is operating roughly 3,175. Yes the USAF does loose aircraft in accidents as do every air force on the planet. However, the flight hours vs. Class “A” accidents comparison will show a little different picture. As for maintenance, when the USAF has an enlisted man maintaining a multi-million dollar aircraft for which he is responsible, compared to how the Russians do it, the comparison ends. I recall when the Russian Admiral came aboard the US aircraft carrier in the Med, and saw enlisted people maintaining our planes, and the woman on the stick that flew him onto the ship, he was amazed, and in disbelief. They can’t do that . . . even today!

            Now if the Liberally led education system continues to dumb down our population, as it has for four generations, we will catch up with the Russians. I’m done!

          • shmiggle

            you are trying to have a penis size competition while using someone else’s penis in place of your own. Many countries have evaluated US aircraft and passed on it. If you were to run a multi billion dollar acquisition you would have more credibility, all you have now is nationalism and blind faith in unsustainable hardware which has now spent itself into a corner and will be enduring many cutbacks in the near future. the age old german dillema. for every american aircraft, russia can make 2-3.

          • gunnerv1

            I have not operated with Russian Aircraft, BUT, I have operated with the Russian Navy. One and only one comment: Russian Ships are ill maintained and suffer from chronic failures. Been there, Seen That, they suck!

          • Ctrot

            The reasons that nations buy Russian instead of American are:

            1 – They can’t afford the best.
            2 – They’re run by dictators with abysmal human rights records and only the Russians will sell to them (because Russia could not care less about such things).
            3 – They no longer fit into categories 1 and 2 but once did and have become accustomed to Russian products and continue to buy them so as to not upset the established infrastructure apple cart.

          • muzzleloader

            Asides from being a brainwashed drone of the left, you are terribly misinformed. The reason India purchased Russian hardware for so long is because of arrangements the Soviets made with the Indian government back in the 1950’s when the Soviets were courting India to be a client state. Like many client states around the world, the Soviets sold aircraft practically at cost. If you were really informed you would know that over the past several years, the Indian government has had a terrible time with Russian stuff, ranging from warships to combat aircraft. The Indian Air Force has lost so many Mig-21’s in crashes that they retired the whole fleet. The Indians are also having readiness issues with the SU-27 fighter, a much more recent design. Do you know that they are buying 8 P-8 Poseidons from Boeing? Why is Japan and Australia buying American? Because they are quality, that is why. Nations purchase what they can afford, and if less expensive Russian hardware is what they can afford that is what they will buy. I would ask you if you have any experience in the military, but judging from your ignorance and your bias I think we already know.

          • shmiggle

            wow. way to fail at an argument in the first sentence. You did all that work explaining but it is all completely wasted.

          • muzzleloader

            Wasted? Are you not able to comprehend what I said?

          • M-123 driver

            It’s wasted because you can’t convince the ill informed ideologue with facts. It is like trying to argue with a drunk. Scmiggle, continue to deceive yourself that Soviet/Russian equipment or force structure are superior. Then look at the fact that anytime they have faced off which side came out on top. I know you will immediately point to Vietnam so let me pull that rug out from under you. Our military won every battle despite crushing political interference and lack of support from our population. The North managed to obtain ultimate victory politically, not militarily where they suffered greatly and were defeated miserably.

          • Curtis Conway

            I have actually made the argument that we won the Vietnam Police Action because we stopped Communism right there. I have since learned that the Communist changed tactics, and are now part of our government. Look at the mindset . . . G-d is out, mere man knows best, and if you do not have money or influence, you get to be a serf or less.

          • KazuakiShimazaki

            >They can’t do that . . . even today!

            That carrier story is much loved by both Americans waving their male genitalia and reformist Russians with a masochistic slant, but it completely ignores the basic differences between the two systems. The Soviet system uses a SINGLE line of competence. Sergeants / starshini get more training than privates / seamen, a praporschik / michman even more and then we get to the officers. The American system uses TWO lines where after CPO we get a huge crash down to the officers. It is not so much who is better in this question but where the technical expertise was put.

            We can also get into some “less pleasant” comparisons. It may be true that one Soviet Captain-Lieutenant does the same job as an American E-6 (that’s the variant I heard of the carrier story). However, that would be to ignore his VKU (academy) classmate, who’s now the commander of a frigate at the same time an American might be a department head. Or his classmate before the academy who opted for the army instead and is a battalion commander. He will be expected to churn out his battalion decision in less than 2 hours in an attack, and directly control attached artillery … with the help of 1-2 adjutants (they changed the title during GPW, but the Chief of Staff of a Soviet Battalion is chief of nearly nothing).

            Ten years later, when his American counterpart crawls to become a battalion commander, he will command his battalion with the aid of a squad of staff and be given a dozen hours to plan out an attack. He will never be asked to control artillery, only to enjoy their effects through the battalion FDO.

            Hopefully such comparisons should dampen the ardour of silly waving contests.

            A crew died. Let’s have a minute of silence instead.

          • gunnerv1

            The Crew was ordered to Bail Out, we have no news other than that. Although they are our long standing perceived Enemy, I pray they survived.

          • Curtis Conway

            Amen! Human life is human . . . life.

          • gunnerv1

            We train E-2’s to be Technically Competent Maintenance workers for Heavy Ordnance, I know, I was a (“Platform”) Instructor on the MK42 (Mods) and Mk45 (Mods) Gun Systems, almost every class (12 students per class) was a spread of pay grades, from E2 to E7. Even had a class or two that was all E4 and below and one class with all E5 and above.

          • gunnerv1

            Just tell me when “The War on Poverty” will be over.

          • Ctrot

            Never, that’s the point. It’s purpose isn’t to “end poverty” but to buy votes for the democrat party, in perpetuity.

          • gunnerv1

            Exactly, but to paraphrase LBJ (He used the “N-word”) when he sign it into law. I’ll have the N****** voting Democrat for the next 200 years.

    • Drew

      It appears to have potentially help up for decades. Nothing lasts forever.

      • Curtis Conway

        Back in the old days . . . every Soviet Fighter was required to operate off a grass strip. Remember all the skirts on the wheels? The engine technology has not kept up so size and weight has had to increase to maintain performance levels. Western fighters nowadays are much more capable than a corresponding counterpart. The Russians have some good equipment, and the Chinese are trying very hard to make it better. They will succeed because they will either steal it from us, or the improvement will be a fallout of them going to the moon . . . just like it was for us . . . only they get a head start. They already make the computers. Their metallurgy is getting better too.

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  • gunnerv1

    One Engine failure will not bring the Aircraft down. Three Counter-Rotating Propeller Gas Turbine Engines will carry the Tu 95 a long way. I think they may have been in fear of a Catastrophic Fire engulfing the interior of the Aircraft or it was about to. Sounds like the built in “Fire Suppression” systems couldn’t overcome an ignited fuel leak. “Crap Happens” Glad the Crew bailed out and hope they survived.

  • life form

    The Tu 95 has four engines and can do fine on three. It sounds like an uncontrollable fire. Hope the crew got out OK.

    • Secundius

      @ life form.

      It’s probably Engine Maintenance. There was a early 1960’s story about Khrushchev and Kennedy at the Moscow International Airport. About to go on a Soviet “Sight-Seeing” trip on one of Aeroflot’s New Civilian Modern Transport Aircrafts. I think the Aircrafts were Tupolev Tu-110, Tu-114 and Tu-124. One caught fire, one wouldn’t work, for whatever reasons. And last a Soviet Air Force Major, wouldn’t Sign-Off on. Because he was worried about what would happen if the plane ever left the ground. Khrushchev asked want should be done with the Upstart Soviet Major, and Kennedy replied, Promote Him. And added that anyone more concerned about the Passenger’s Lives, rather then His Own Life, Should be Promoted. The Story goes, that the Soviet Major made General on Kennedy’s recommendations.

      Whether Soviet or Russian Federation, Maintenance is usually at the Bottom of List on things to do. They have the tendency to “Beethoven” everything and anything, instead of fixing the problem…

      • life form

        thanks. good story, too! I appreciated the post.

  • Secundius

    Sounds like the Ron White, joke about how far do you get on One Engine, As far as the Crash Site…

  • old guy

    Hey fellas, have a little pity. Give the little, old lady a big hand for making it into her ’60s. (did I hear someone whisper B52?)

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