Flightradar Photo Says How Ukraine Airspace Has Been Shut
Europe's aviation regulator also warned against the hazards to flying in bordering areas of Russia and Belarus, because of military activities.
Kyiv: Just hours before a Russian assault was launched on Ukraine capital Kyiv, Ukrainian air space was abruptly shut down to civilian aircraft and a formal notice to pilots and operators was sent warning of the “potential hazard for civil aviation.” According to a Reuters report, Ukraine closed its airspace to civilian flights on Thursday, citing a high risk to safety. Meanwhile, Europe’s aviation regulator also warned against the hazards to flying in bordering areas of Russia and Belarus, because of military activities.
Here’s a photo of the airspace shared by Flightradar:
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Airspace over and around Ukraine at 06:00 UTC time, today and 7 days ago. pic.twitter.com/0U6MYguZdO
— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) February 24, 2022
On its website, Ukraine State Air Traffic Services Enterprise said the country’s airspace was closed to civilian flights starting from 0045 GMT on Thursday, with air traffic services suspended. The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) said airspace in Russia and Belarus within 100 nautical miles of their borders with Ukraine could also pose safety risks.
“In particular, there is a risk of both intentional targeting and misidentification of civil aircraft,” the agency said in a conflict zone bulletin. “The presence and possible use of a wide range of ground and airborne warfare systems poses a high risk for civil flights operating at all altitudes and flight levels.”
Earlier this week, Ukraine said that around ten airlines, including Lufthansa, KLM, SAS, and Air France had stopped flying there amid warnings of an attack by Russian forces. But as late as February 22, Ukraine insisted its air corridors were still open and flying was safe.
According to a Forbes report, the space shut down may just have saved the lives of hundreds of passengers. By closing its airspace just before Vladimir Putin launched his violent “peacekeeping” operation, Ukraine may have prevented the destruction of an aircraft by missile or cyber-attack, the report noted.
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