Monday, June 24, 2024

Russian Su-34 fighter-bomber crashes in North Ossetia

A Russian Air Force Su-34 Fullback fighter-bomber crashed in the mountainous region of North Ossetia on June 11, resulting in the deaths of both crew members.

The crash was confirmed by the Russian Ministry of Defense and reported by TASS.

“An Su-34 aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces crashed in a mountainous area of the Republic of North Ossetia-Alania during a routine training flight. The aircraft crashed in an uninhabited area, causing no ground damage. Both pilots on board were killed,” the Ministry of Defense stated.


Preliminary investigations suggest a technical malfunction as the likely cause of the crash. A commission from the Aerospace Forces has been dispatched to the crash site to conduct a thorough investigation.

Ilya Tumanov, a prominent figure in the Russian military aviation community and administrator of the ‘Fighterbomber’ channel, provided additional context on the incident. He indicated that the Su-34 was involved in a transfer flight to another airbase when it crashed in the North Ossetian mountains.

The Su-34, a twin-seat, twin-engine fighter-bomber, is designed for tactical bombing and ground attack missions. Known for its versatility, the Su-34 can carry a wide array of weaponry, including air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles, as well as anti-ship and anti-radiation missiles. Despite its robust capabilities, the aircraft is not immune to technical failures.

The Su-34 (NATO reporting name “Fullback”) is a derivative of the Su-27 Flanker, but it is optimized for strike missions. It retains some air-to-air capabilities, carrying the R-77 (AA-12) missile and two R-73 (AA-11 Archer) short-range missiles on its wingtip rails. However, its primary role involves ground and naval strikes, equipped with a variety of munitions such as the Kh-55, Kh-59, Kh-59M, Kh-25, Kh-29, Kh-31, Kh-35, Kh-41 Moskit, P-800 Oniks, and Kh-58 missiles.

The Su-34 also features a 30 mm GSh-301 cannon with 180 rounds and ten underwing and under-fuselage hardpoints for a diverse range of weapons, including guided and free-fall bombs.

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About author:

Dylan Malyasov
Dylan Malyasov
Dylan Malyasov is the editor-in-chief of Defence Blog. He is a journalist, an accredited defense advisor, and a consultant. His background as a defense advisor and consultant adds a unique perspective to his journalistic endeavors, ensuring that his reporting is well-informed and authoritative. read more