UPDATED | A sad day for the parajump and aviation communities of Slovakia. Two Let L-410s collided in mid-air and crashed on the ground on 20 August 2015, killing seven of those on board.
According to authorities the aircraft went down near the border with the Czech Republic, after colliding at about 5,000 feet altitude. One of the planes is confirmed burnt-out two kilometres (1,5 miles) from the village of Červený Kameň. The second plane came down in the Chotuč area, initial reports say. Later reports indicated the distance between the crash sites is about 500 metres/yards in a direct line. There were conflicting reports on the types, but it seems both aircraft were a Let L-410. The skydivers were practicing for a mass jump at the Slavnica Airfield airshow coming up this Sunday. The airshow was subsequently cancelled.
— Ruptly Newsroom (@RuptlyNewsroom) 20 augustus 2015
A combined total of 34 parachutists were on the planes, with officials saying them most of them might have made it out alive by jumping before the planes hit the ground. However, authorities did confirm the death of at least seven: the two pilots of each plane plus three jumpers on board of one of the planes. Fourteen parachutists on one plane managed to jump before the crash, all seventeen parachutists of the second plane jumped in time. Five of them sustained only minor wounds and were released from the hospital after treatment.
Rescue services scrambled three helicopters coming from Trenčín, Banská Bystrica and Nitra to reach the crash sites in hilly and forest terrain.
The Czech-made Let L-410 Turbolet is known as a trustworthy aircraft. Since production began in 1971 in then Czechoslovakia more than 1,140 aircraft have been produced, with the newest model being the L-410NG currently in production.
© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger
Featured image: A Let L-410. PLEASE NOTE: Archive photo, this is not one of the crashed planes (Image © Let Aircraft Industries)