Let TABSO LZ101
LZ101 was a scheduled flight of the Bulgarian-Soviet company TABSO (Transport-Aviation Company - Bulgarian-Soviet Air Transport Company, today's Balkan Bulgarian Airlines) from Sofia via Budapest and Prague on Thursday, November 19, which in Berlin on November 1966. the slope of the Sakrakopec hill near the airport in Bratislava, where he previously landed unplanned due to weather conditions. The crash killed all 82 people on board. This is the worst plane crash in Slovakia and the former Czechoslovakia.
On the day of the accident, the Ilyushin Il-18B aircraft with the registration mark LZ-BEN, manufactured in January 1964 under serial number 7101 and taken over by TABSO on January 22 of the same year, was deployed on flight LZ101. Until the accident in Slovakia, he had no accident and was maintained in accordance with [the manufacturer's] regulations.
The crew was commanded by Captain Lubomir Todorov Antonov, 41, 11,959 flying hours. He was one of the oldest IL-18 captains at TABSO. He began flying this type of aircraft in July 1962, shortly after entering service. He passed the proficiency tests two days earlier. He knew Bratislava Airport very well and has flown there 11 times on various occasions. The second pilot (first officer) was Svetoslav Dimitrov Shakadanov, 36 years old, 5975 flying hours. He passed the proficiency test the day before. The navigation officer was Slavi 1st class navigator Stefanov Tomakov, the radiotelegraphic officer was Nikola Alexandrov Tasev, 36 years old, 3160 flying hours. The flight engineer was Stojan Todorov Rangelov, 42, 3602 flying hours. The crew also consisted of stewards Maria Ivanovová, Svetla Georgievová and Violina Stoičkovová.
Among the 74 passengers of the LZ101 flight were mostly residents of Bulgaria, but also citizens of Chile, Brazil, Honduras, Argentina, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Czechoslovakia, the USSR, Tunisia and Japan were on board. Among them were the Bulgarian opera soloist Ekaterina Popova, the Bulgarian ambassador to the German Democratic Republic, General Ivan Bycharov, and the well-known Honduran writer and journalist Ramón Amaya Amador.
Flight LZ101 took off from Budapest at 11.46 CET. While in the air, the weather in Prague worsened. Captain Antonov decided to land at Bratislava Airport (today's M. R. Štefánik Airport), where he landed at 11.58. By 15.30 the weather in Prague had improved and Antonov decided to prepare for departure. The meteorologist of Bratislava Airport, Jan Popelený, informed the captain that medium to strong turbulence was expected over the Little Carpathians northwest of Bratislava.
At 16.10 the flight was loaded and at 16.20: 30 the crew received permission to taxi on runway 04 or runway 31 at their discretion. The pilots chose VPD 31, ie takeoff in a westerly direction, against the belt of the Little Carpathians. At the same time, they were allowed to start, turn right, ie north, to the NDB OKR radio beacon (on the map), climb to an altitude of 5,100 m and after flying over the NIT beacon (on the map) they were to turn in the direction of Brno and continue to Prague. In the meantime, Ilyushin Il-14 of Czechoslovak Airlines also took off from Bratislava. To maintain the spacing between IL-14 and IL-18, Antonov was instructed to maintain an altitude of 300 m until he received permission to ascend to his flight level.
Flight LZ101 took off at 16.28 in almost complete darkness. Its launch was observed by air traffic controller Jaroslav Vadovič, who announced that it was normal. Shortly after the announcement of the ascent, the LZ101 was instructed to turn right and contact the Bratislava approach dispatcher on the 120.9 MHz frequency. However, the plane failed to switch to the approach control service and approximately two minutes after departure from Bratislava airport crashed 8 km from the airport in Sakrakopec