ASN Aircraft accident Yakovlev Yak-40 LZ-DOK Sofia-Vrazhdebna Airport (SOF)
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Date:Tuesday 2 August 1988
Type:Silhouette image of generic YK40 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Yakovlev Yak-40
Operator:Hemus Air
Registration: LZ-DOK
MSN: 9620247
First flight: 1976
Engines: 3 Ivchenko AI-25
Crew:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 4
Passengers:Fatalities: 26 / Occupants: 33
Total:Fatalities: 29 / Occupants: 37
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:Sofia-Vrazhdebna Airport (SOF) (   Bulgaria)
Phase: Takeoff (TOF)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Sofia-Vrazhdebna Airport (SOF/LBSF), Bulgaria
Destination airport:Varna Airport (VAR/LBWN), Bulgaria
At Sofia Airport all civil traffic had been halted because of the departure of the Bulgarian "Air Force One" Tupolev 154, carrying Bulgarian leader Todor Zhivkov. Because of a delay of this flight, the air traffic controller cleared The Hemus Air Yak-40 for takeoff, asking the crew to expedite their departure. Trying to leave in a hurry, the crew forgot to set the trim correctly. Consequently, the aircraft failed to become airborne. It overran runway 09 into a ravine of the Iskar River and burst in flames.
It appeared that the stabilizer was set in the full "Down" position, instead it was supposed to be set between 2.5-3 degrees in "the Up" position.

Runway excursion

» Soviet Transports
» NRC Handelsblad 03.08.1988
» Captain Nikola H. Kolev (e-mail 10-8-2014)


photo of Yakovlev-Yak-40-LZ-DOK
accident date: 02-08-1988
type: Yakovlev Yak-40
registration: LZ-DOK

This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Sofia-Vrazhdebna Airport to Varna Airport as the crow flies is 362 km (226 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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Yakovlev Yak-40

  • 1136 built
  • 57th loss
  • 29th fatal accident
  • 5th worst accident (at the time)
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