All eight personnel on board were killed when a Russian Navy Beriev Be-200ChS multipurpose amphibian crashed into a mountain in Turkey while engaged in fire-fighting operations on August 14. Those killed comprised five Russian Navy crew members and three Turkish nationals.
The aircraft had just completed a water drop on a fire near the city of Kahramanmaras in southeastern Turkey when it struck the mountain, broke-up, caught fire and was destroyed. It was leased to the Turkish Department of Forestry from the Russian Federation to assist in fighting the forest fires that are currently raging in Turkey.
The aircraft involved in this tragic accident was serial number RF-88450/Bort number ‘20 Yellow’ (c/n 64620090311), which was only 18 months old, having made its maiden flight on February 14, 2020. It was the first of three ordered by the Russian Navy and had been delivered on July 14, 2020, to the 859th TsBPiPLS at Yeysk. It is named ‘Aleksandr Mamkin’ after a World War Two Soviet transport aircraft pilot.
In addition to this aircraft, two other Be-200s are currently operating in Turkey to assist in the fire-fighting role. One, provided by Azerbaijan, had arrived on August 5, while Russia’s EMERCOM has also sent one of its aircraft.