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Teen Survives Ride In Jet Wing

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Flying Fox

AFF Supporter
Jul 13, 2006
My Map
An amazing story from The Australian.

Definately worse than travelling any LCC, including the ones in the USA.

Teen survives ride in jet wing | The Australian

A 15-YEAR-old Russian boy suffered acute frostbite after riding the wing of a Boeing-737 plane on a 1300km two-hour flight.

With temperatures hitting minus 50C and the plane at a cruising speed of 900km/h, the teenager Andrei Shcherbakov collapsed onto the tarmac when the plane landed.

He had clung on for the entire flight from Perm in Russia's Ural region to Vnukova Airport in Moscow.

His arms and legs were so severely frozen that rescuers were at first unable to remove his coat and shoes.

He was taken by ambulance to hospital where doctors are trying to save his hands.

When he awoke, Andrei told police that he had decided to run away from his alcoholic father and their home in Perm.

He went to his grandmother's house and had dinner before telling her that he was going to spend the night at his friend's house, who had a birthday.

Instead, the boy took a taxi and went to the airport.

"I had some money with me. I just wanted to take a look at the planes. I was wandering about the territory of the airport and saw a hole in its fence," he said.

"I sneaked in and approached a big plane. It was already dark and no-one saw me. I didn't know what to do next.

"Eventually, I decided to climb up the landing gear into the wing. When I was in, I sat down there on a tyre and fell asleep."

The boy said he woke up when the plane was flying.

"I got so scared and fainted. I don't remember what was happening afterwards. They told me later that I had spent about two hours at the height of 10,000 meters at very low temperatures.

"I came to my senses again when the plane had already landed. I got down on the runway and collapsed. I could not control my legs and it was very cold," he said.

Airport workers saw the teenager falling down on the ground from the hull of the plane.

He was taken to hospital in a half-conscience state. When at the hospital, he complained his hands were burning.

Moscow's air and water transport control department said the boy's parents were immediately informed when he fell to the runway tarmac and his mother Olga flew to the capital the same day, Saturday.

Mrs Shcherbakov arrived in Moscow and took her son back home to Perm because the family could not afford the expensive hospital treatment.

A doctor from the Perm hospital, where the boy is staying at the moment, said that the tissue of the boy's hands started dying away, which may make surgeons amputate both hands.


Feb 5, 2006
Cuban kid escaped Catro's regeime by doing the same thing on a trans Atlantic flight years ago.

I will remember not to complain about the cabin temp next time i fly


Ari Gold

Active Member
Jan 16, 2007
Incredible story.

I wonder if he earns a Cabin Bonus for this class? :p


AFF Supporter
Aug 2, 2006
Flights normally cost and arm and a leg! Would a couple of hands be cheaper than that?


AFF Supporter
Dec 25, 2004
My Map
The number of people who die each year doing similar 'escapes' is actually quite high. It's sad when people feel that this is the only way they can escape something.


AFF Supporter
Mar 22, 2005
Sad story which may have a happy ending after all.

RIA Novosti - Russia said:

Earlier a Russian tabloid Tvoi Den said that Andrei Shcherbakov, 15, would have to have his fingertips removed after he survived temperatures hitting -50C (-58 F) during his unbelievable 1,300-km (808-mile) journey from Perm to Moscow.

A deputy chief doctor of a children's hospital in Perm, Lyudmila Nefyodova, dispersed amputation fears saying that the boy was in a satisfactory condition, although he would have to stay in hospital for at least another three weeks.

"Blood circulation is improving in both of his wrists. The muscles are quite viable," she added.

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