Investigators suspect icing caused An-28 engines failure

Siberian Aviation Search and Rescue Center

On July 16, 2021, an Antonov An-28 airplane crash-landed near Tomsk, western Siberia, Russia.

The aircraft, registration number RA-28728, belonged to the company Siberian Light Aviation. It was on its way from Kedrovo Airport to Tomsk-Bogashevo Airport (TOF) when it disappeared from radar. 

Thanks to its emergency beacon, the An-28 was quickly located by emergency services, flipped over in a swampy area. All 17occupants survived the incident.

While the investigation is still ongoing, preliminary findings indicate that the aircraft suffered a failure of both engines during the climb ten minutes after takeoff. 

The engine failure might have been related to icing, investigators found out. Thus, they will now have to establish why the automatic anti-icing systems did not activate and why the pilots did not trigger them manually despite entering a zone of possible icing.

As a consequence, the Russian Federal Air Transport Agency Rosaviatsiya ordered all An-28 operators to carry out a one-time check of the anti-icing systems.

Over the past 30 years in Russia, 27 aviation events associated with the Antonov An-28 occurred due to the shutdown of two or more engines in flight. 

A recurring problem was the icing of the engines. “One of the main reasons for the failure or self-shutdown of engines in flight was the untimely shutdown of the aircraft anti-icing system or its incorrect operation,” Rosaviatsiya explained regarding previous incidents.

The Antonov An-28 is a light twin-engine transport aircraft developed from the Antonov An-14 used as a short-range airliner and utility transport. It was primarily built under license by the Polish manufacturer PZL-Mielec.


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