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Passenger Jet Hits Birds, Lands Safely in Cornfield

Russia celebrating Ural Airlines pilot as a hero
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 15, 2019 6:21 AM CDT

(Newser) – "Sully" had to come down in the Hudson River. The pilot of a Russian passenger jet just managed a similar feat in a cornfield. A Ural Airlines jet with 233 people on board struck a flock of gulls shortly after takeoff near Moscow, but the pilot brought the plane down safely—with the engines off and the landing gear up, reports Reuters. (This YouTube video provides a sense of what happened.) Initial reports say 23 people were injured, but there were no fatalities, and Russian media reports were already dubbing it the "Miracle over Ramensk." The pilot was Damir Yusupov, 41, and his co-pilot was 23-year-old Georgy Muruzin. A Kremlin spokesman called them "heroes" who would be nominated for state awards, per the New York Times.

"About five seconds after takeoff, the plane began to shake heavily," one passenger told Rossiya-24. "Then five seconds later, lamps on the right side of the plane began to flash and there was a smell of burning," he added. "Then we landed." The Ural Airlines Airbus A321 had been headed from Moscow's Zhukovsky airport to Simferopol, a city on the Crimean Peninsula, with 226 passengers and seven crew members, reports CNN. "Thanks to the professionalism of pilots and the crew, there were no serious injuries and damages among the passengers," said Russia's Health Ministry in a statement. That could change: Interfax was reporting one serious injury, though no details were available. (Read more emergency landing stories.)

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