The European Aviation Safety Agency published a report today (15 April) bearing the title Occurrences over the high seas involving military aircraft in 2014.
The report analyses the rising number of airliner incidents involving Russian military aircraft, most of which take place in the Baltic. Bizarrely, the name ‘Russia never appears in the report.
Western press has reported about a flurry of such incidents over the past year, assuming that Russian military aircraft were responsible for the risks created.
Conversely, a Russian SU-27 jet fighter intercepted a US RC-135U reconnaissance aircraft over the Baltic on 7 April. The Pentagon denounced the incident as “sloppy airmanship”.
The 33-page report finds that “non-cooperative” military activity has significantly increased in 2014. The total number of military flights over the Baltic has increased as well.
Overall the data is as follows:
- 4 AIRPROX “occurrences” (situation in whichthe distance between aircraft as well as their relative positions and speed have been such that the safety of the aircraft involved may have been compromised) involving civil and military aircraft in 2012
- 6 such “occurrences” and 1 airspace infringement in 2013
- 16 such “occurrences” and 3 airspace infringements in 2014
- 3 airspace infringements in January 2015
However, the word “Russia” does not appear in the report, while the tension over the Ukraine crisis is called an “unstable geopolitical situation”.