Russia’s Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC) has granted approval for ATR 42/72 aircraft to operate at Russian airports with non-tarmac runways.
Of the 332 airports and airdromes in Russia, 38% have non-tarmac runways.
UTair (UT) has 14 ATR 42s and its subsidiary, UTair-Ukraine (QU), has three ATR 72-200s and 14 -500s. NordStar (Y7) has five ATR 42s. According to UT`s website, it has 14 ATR 42s, three ATR 72-200s and 14 -500s, but only ATR 42s fleet fly both at UT and UT-Ukraine, UT-Ukraine doesn`t operate with 72s.
Y7’s ATRs are also used by Nordavia airline (5N). Both carriers, which are owned by Norilsk Nickel Co., operate in the North of Russia and Siberia regions where most natural runways are located. Because of UT’s schedule, Soviet-made Antonov An-24s operate on these destinations.
South-based Kuban (GW) airlines is considering a turboprop aircraft such as the ATRs for its regional route.
New Russian regulations are prompting many small regional carriers to consider which aircraft will replace their Soviet-built fleets.