Bodycam footage published in recent days appears to show a Russian pilot narrowly escaping death by ejecting from his plane before it crashed.
— Rob Lee (@RALee85) October 23, 2022
The footage matches descriptions of a crash months earlier, in which a Russian Su-25 crashes in a training flight after clipping a power line.
The pilot is seen in the cockpit, flying low over trees and fields. Suddenly there is a bang, and the pilot is flung from his seat and opens a parachute.
The plane, which matches the profile of an Su-25, can be seen turning upside-down above him, flames shooting from its exhaust. A few seconds later it crashes in a field in a fireball as the pilot drifts to the ground.
The incident happened in the Belgorod region in Russia in June during a training flight, state-media organization RIA Novosti reported at the time.
Belgorod is next to Russia’s border with Ukraine, and is a staging ground where Russia forces amass before being deployed.
The Russian news outlet Baza reported that the pilot ejecting after the Su-25 clipped a power transmission tower in a field.
RIA Novosti reported the crash was due to a technical malfunction, without giving further detail.
The pilot survived the fall and was evacuated to a nearby airfield, RIA Novosti reported.
Another video, featured in the Baza report, shows the jet’s pieces burning in the field after the crash.
Insider was unable to independently verify the videos but expert military analysts, including Rob Lee, posted and discussed the footage, suggesting it was legitimate.
The Su-25 is a Soviet-made tank-busting aircraft that has been used by both Russia and Ukraine in the conflict.
Sophia Ankel is a News Reporter based in London for insider, where this first appeared. She also has bylines in the Guardian, The Independent, and VICE. Sophia has spoken about her work on BBC Three Radio.