6-Dec-2012 Source: UTair
December 4 marks the 30 year anniversary of the first all female helicopter crew at Tyumen Civil Aviation, the original airline from which UTair Aviation was born. UTair takes special pride in celebrating this special date in its history and the history of the domestic helicopter industry. The all woman crew, headed by well-known pilot Inna Kopetz and consisting of co-pilot Valentina Volkova, navigator Tamara Afanasyeva and flight engineer Lyudmila Koshil, set numerous world records for flight operations in the Mi-26, the world’s largest helicopter. Many of their records are still unmatched today.
The famous crew set nine records in transporting heavy cargo in a three day period in 1982. Among other records, the crew lifted 20 tons of cargo to a height of 4,050 meters in a Mi-26 helicopter. Another one features a takeoff with maximum standard payload takeoff weight of 56,520 kilograms to a height of 2,000 meters. The figures are nearly similar to those set in a male record by Gurgen Karapetyan.
Inna Kopetz is the only woman helicopter pilot in the world to have logged 11,500 flight hours. Ms Kopetz is a member of the International Association of Women Helicopter Pilots and a Master of Sport International class. Her crews have established 15 world records with the Mi-1, Mi-8 and Mi-26 rotorcraft. Currently Inna Kopetz is an advisor to the airline’s general representative for relations in the civil aviation community and is active in community service. She has been the main driver behind the creation of a museum in Lyubertsy devoted to the founder of Russian helicopter technology, the well known engineer Alexei Cheremukhin.