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The Sknyliv air show disaster occurred on Saturday July 27, 2002, when a Ukrainian Air Force Sukhoi Su-27 of the Ukrainian Falcons crashed during an aerobatics presentation at Sknyliv airfield near Lviv, Ukraine. 77 people were killed and 543 injured, 100 of whom were hospitalised. It was the second major accident involving the Ukrainian military in less than a year, following the alleged downing of Siberia Airlines Flight 1812 in October 2001, and is the worst air show accident in history. Over 10,000 spectators attended the air show, staged to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Ukrainian Air Force's 14th Air Corps. At 12:52pm, the Su-27 aircraft flown by two experienced pilots entered a rolling maneuver with a downward trajectory at low altitude; having rolled upright once more the aircraft was still descending rapidly and the left wing dropped shortly before the aircraft hit the ground, at which point the crew initiated ejection. The aircraft flattened out initially, skidding over the ground towards stationary aircraft, striking a glancing blow against the nose of an Il-76 transport aircraft before beginning to explode and cartwheel into the crowd of spectators. Both pilots survived with minor injuries from the ejection and landed just a few feet away from the transport aircraft. 77 onlookers were killed, including 19 children (though initial reports put the number of dead at 85). Another 100 were hospitalized for head injuries, burns, and bone fractures. Other injuries were less severe and did not require hospitalization: a total of 543 people were injured during the event. Following the disaster, the pilots stated that the flightmap they had received differed from the actual layout. On the flight data recorder, one pilot asks, "And where are our spectators?" Others have suggested that the pilots were slow to react to automated warnings issued by the flight computer. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]





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