Kyrgyz Air Force Mi-8MT crashes near Kichi-Alai

A Mil Mi-8MT (NATO reporting name: Hip-H) belonging to the Kyrgyz Air Force crashed near Kichi-Alai in the Nookat district of Kyrgyzstan’s Osh region on June 4.

Kyrgyz AF Mi-8MT handover May 2019 [Russian MOD]
One of two Mi-8MTs being handed over to the Kyrgyz Air Force on May 2, 2019. Two more were handed over on November 27 that year. All four were formerly operated by the Russian Aerospace Forces, which were donated to Kyrgyzstan after being refurbished. Russian MOD

The heavy-lift tactical transport helicopter was en route to an undisclosed location in the nation’s Chon-Alai district – which borders Tajikistan – with three crew members and 13 passengers on board. While no deaths occurred as a result of the crash, 14 of the on board personnel were injured – one of them seriously – and all were transported by ambulance to the Osh Interregional Combined Hospital for treatment.

While the cause of the crash was not disclosed, the Hip-H was completely destroyed in a post-crash fire. The Kyrgyz Air Force has operated the Mi-8MT since May 2019, after the nation received two second-hand examples of the type from the Russian Aerospace Forces. A subsequent delivery of another two helicopters occurred in November 2019, bringing the air arms total Mi-8MT fleet to four aircraft. Following this attrition case, three examples remain in operational service with the Kyrgyz Air Force.