Friday Favourite – 22 July – Tupolev TU-134
With the recent crash of the Rusair example at Petrozavodsk in Russia, the Tupolev TU-134 has become the latest type to face the axe, so I wanted to give it the praise it deserves as one of the classic airliners of all time.
Built as Russia’s response to the DC-9, HS Trident and BAC 1-11, the TU-134 first flew in 1963 and was proposed as a short-medium range airliner.
In total 850 examples were built, mainly for the domestic market operated by Aeroflot. Other examples found service with airlines in Eastern Europe and Asia.
Today, very few examples remain in service, and the recent crash has led Russian authorities to demand its retirement.