Date & Time:
Aug 29, 1981 at 2031 LT
Irkutsk - Chita - Zeya - Blagoveshchensk
The three engine airplane was completing flight SU674 from Irkutsk to Blagoveshchensk with intermediate stops in Chita and Zeya. While approaching Zeya Airport, the crew encountered marginal weather conditions with limited visibility (less than 2 km). On final, the GPWS warning sounded in the cockpit while the aircraft was descending below the minimum descent altitude. The pilot-in-command decided to continue the approach when the airplane struck trees and crashed in a wooded area located 350 meters short of runway threshold and 125 meters to the right of the extended centerline, bursting into flames. Two crew members and one passengers were killed while 26 other occupants were injured. Five passengers escaped uninjured.
It was determined that the crew decided to continue the approach after passing the minimum descent altitude in below minimum visibility conditions. The crew failed to respond to the GPWS warning sound and to initiate a go-around despite the fact they did not establish a visual contact with the ground and runway. It was reported that weather conditions were worse than forecast in the bulletin transmitted to the crew and there were local patches of fog in the last segment of the approach path which was considered as contributing factors.