Thursday, March 21, 2013

Poland resumes investigation of President Kaczynski's plane crash

WARSAW, March 21 - RAPSI, Yevgeny Bezeka. A Polish court has quashed the decision taken last year by the prosecutors office to close the case of alleged violations of flight rules during the preparation of President Lech Kaczynskis visit to Smolensk on April 10, 2010, PAP Polish Press Agency reports.

The prosecutors said they did not find signs of any crime. The daughter of the late president Marta Kaczynska and his brother Jaroslaw Kaczynski filed an appeal against this ruling.

The Polish authorities investigated the actions of the prime ministers and the presidents secretariat and the ministries of foreign affairs and defense. Military prosecutors are currently investigating the potential involvement of military personnel, because the plane that crashed belonged to the Defense Ministry. The case involving civilians was investigated separately. It was turned over to the district prosecutors office in Warsaw in 2011 and closed in June 2012.

The prosecutors looked into the preparations of the two official Polish visits to Smolensk, one by Prime Minister Donald Tusk on April 7, 2010, and the other by President Lech Kaczynski on April 10, 2010. They uncovered a number of violations committed by officials, but concluded that legally none of these constituted a crime of negligence.

A Polish Tu-154 plane carrying former President Lech Kaczynski, his wife, and a large group of high-ranking officials crashed near Smolensk due to thick fog on April 10, 2010, killing 96 people. The Moscow-based Interstate Aviation Committee issued a final report in late July 2011, placing the blame entirely on the Polish crew. Meanwhile, Poland, which carried out a separate investigation, partially blamed the Russian air traffic controllers for the tragedy.


NTSB Identification: ENG10RA025
14 CFR Unknown
Accident occurred Saturday, April 10, 2010 in Smolensk, Russia
Aircraft: TUPOLEV TU154, registration:
Injuries: 89 Fatal.

The foreign authority was the source of this information.

On April 10, 2010, about 0656 Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), a Tupolev Tu-154M, Tail Number 101, operated by the Polish Air Force as flight PLF101, crashed during approach to the Military Aerodrom Smolensk "Severnyi", Russia. All 89 passengers and 7 flightcrew were killed, including the President of Poland. The airplane was destroyed by impact and postcrash fire.

Following the accident, the governments of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Poland concluded a bilateral agreement that the regional international independent safety investigation organization, the Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC), would conduct the investigation. Although the airplane was operated as a "state" aircraft, by the mutual agreement, the investigation was conducted following the guidance provided in ICAO Annex 13 Standards and Recommended Practices. As the United States was state of design and manufacture for the TAWS and FMS units, the NTSB was requested to support the investigation activity.

For more information on the accident investigation, contact MAK at

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