MiG-29s back in use by Polish military

“The fleet of MiG-29 aircraft will rise into the air, the pilots want to fly on these machines,” the Air Force Inspector, General Jacek Pszczoła informed the press.

The General also said that he had already signed the relevant application for the resumption of MiG-29 flights and submitted it to the General Commander, Gen. Jarosław Mika, who also signed it.

Because of the recent pause in the use of MiG-29s there are no pilots with valid training allowing to fly the machines.

Gen. Pszczoła explained that pilots of MiG-29 aircraft, in accordance with flight regulations, will be able to resume the necessary training to perform flights.

The General Command informed the media that MiG-29 aircraft were kept ready for the resumption of flights, subjected to scheduled technical maintenance. The resumption of flights follows the analysis of recommendations issued after the accidents involving these machines.

MiG-29s were involved in a series of crashes and incidents in recent years. In December 2017 an aircraft from 23rd Tactical Air Forces Airbase in Mińsk Mazowiecki crashed when approaching to land. The pilot ejected and survived.

In July 2018, a jet fighter from the base in Malbork crashed. The pilot managed to eject himself out of the machine, but was killed.

Another Polish MIG-29 from the airbase in Mińsk Mazowiecki crashed near the town of Stoczek in central-eastern Poland on March 4, 2019.

Since then all MiG-29 flights have been suspended and only the US-made F-16 and the worn-out post-Soviet Su-22s have guarded the Polish sky.

The MiG-29 jet aircraft was designed in 1972 to replace the MiG-21 and MiG-23 with more modern construction. The plane was to be a light jet fighter, complementing the Su-27 heavy air superiority fighter.

The first prototype took off on October 6, 1977, and the first MiG-29 9.12 (NATO: "Fulcrum-A") aircraft entered service in 1984. The Polish air force received its first MiG-29 in 1989. Poland has nearly 30 of these machines.