Norwegian P-3 Orion in shock wave over Barentsz Sea
Close encounter with Russian fighter aircraft
Tuesday 10 April 2012 a Russian fighter passed a RNoAF P-3 Orion, flying over the Barentsz Sea, at un “uncomfortable distance”. Norwegian fighters often intercept Russian aircraft approaching Norwegian air space in that same area, usually without much drama. But last Tuesday’s event was a different story.
During a routine mission the Norwegian P-3 crew had spotted the Russian aircraft, a MiG31 Foxhound, twice at a visual safe distance. The third time however the MiG31 cme in from behind and passed the Orion very close to the Orion, said LtCol John Espen Lien, the communications director at the RnOAF HQ.
Lien said that the incident will be discussed with the Russian Armed Forces
25 years ago, on 13 September 1987, a RNoAF P-3B had a mid air collision with a Soviet Su27 Flanker in a quite similar event. The P-3B was damaged but landed safely.
Marco P.J. Borst
P-3 Orion Research Group – The Netherlands
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