23 injured in Russian plane's emergency landing

Andrei Nikerichev  Moskva agency

Andrei Nikerichev Moskva agency

Plane engines are created to withstand occasional bird strikes, but a collision with a flock of birds can result in serious trouble. "We landed in a field manually, the commander took control".

The 23 who were hurt were taken to a nearby hospital.

But it could have been worse. "They had to make an emergency landing in the field".

The scale of the bird strike was "quite rare", an airline spokesman said. Svetlana Babina, one of the passengers told TASS, "I was sitting in the fifth row".

In such a situation, the pilot sensibly saved the life of the passengers by landing the plane in a corn field. All but one were released after being treated.

Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger III, third from right, pilot who safely glided US Airways Flight 1549 with 155 passengers and crew to a water landing joins survivors and rescuers in a toast marking the anniversary of the event known as the "miracle on the Hudson".

Damir Yusupov, 41, the captain of Ural Airlines A321, attends a news conference on Thursday after the crash. The second in commend was 23-years-old Georgy Murzin, with more than 600 hours. The local fire brigade reported no blaze, just smoke from the right engine.

"The landing was hard but the airplane did not plow into the ground with its nose".

First and foremost, the passengers praised the pilots for their good judgment and skills. It was a very skillful landing.

The "emergency landing", as officials called it, left 74 people needing medical attention - 29 of whom had to be hospitalized, according to TASS.

Aircraft seats are manufactured to protect passengers in cases like this, and the fuel tanks are created to stay intact for a rough landing to prevent fires.

The plane had taken off with 16 tons of fuel and had used only some 500 liters during its short flight.

The Russian Investigative Committee, meanwhile, announced that it had launched a criminal probe into violation of air traffic safety rules and aircraft operation after the accident involving the A321 plane.

Russian Federation has formed a special commission to investigate the circumstances of and the reasons behind the accident.

Press secretary for the Zhukovsky Airport administration Yulia Soshkina and City Council Member Svetlana Bezlepkina assured Izvestia that there aren't any unauthorized landfills near the airport that could attract birds.