Our task was to take off from the airfield to the “waiting area” and from there at the appointed moment to enter the combat course with two pairs of helicopters, one after the other, and hit targets on the proving ground where the real “war” of the ground forces was.
Of course it was beautiful. A pair of Mi-24s flew over a dusty landfill covered with various ground military equipment, made a “slide”, first produced several series of two or four unguided missiles from each block, then fired from a two-barreled 30 two-millimeter cannon in long bursts and making a sharp lapel, at the command of the leader, went to the next circle, methodically shooting assoshka to the side (heat charges leading the missiles with a thermal guidance head). Immediately after this pair, a second pair of helicopters swept over the range on the “battle line” and did the same. Such a carousel lasted only 10 minutes, after which all targets were hit and the helicopters went to the airfield.
When returning to the airfield, the commander of my helicopter Valera Mishanin, specifically lagged behind the lead side and began to "misbehave." Almost parallel to the course of our flight, there was a large automobile highway, along which a large stream of cars was moving. We flew at a low altitude, about 25 meters, and Valera, having shifted the helicopter exactly over the track, began to make slides of meters to 50-tee and then swoop down on wagons moving in the opposite direction. One can only imagine the sensations of the drivers of those trucks on which the terrible Mi-24P “fell” from above at a huge speed and roared upwards in meters of 15 from the cab with a roar.
One of these dives ended up right in front of us suddenly there was a line of high-voltage wires that passed through the track. The distance and our speed did not allow us to turn away and the commander instinctively managed only to abruptly take the handle on himself, apparently to fly over the wires from above. At the same time, I saw a powerful flash on the cab windshield, the helicopter sharply lifted its nose up, almost perpendicular to the ground and, continuing to move forward, began to fall down its tail.
I remember from aerodynamics that there is such a thing as “pickup” when the blades of a helicopter do not flow around the air flow and do not create the necessary lifting force. I think that was exactly what happened to us at that moment.
I do not know why: God, luck, the experience of the pilot or something else, but we did not break. The helicopter, falling, tilted to the right, lowered its nose, the blades began to "rake" the air and the flight leveled off. In those long seconds, I managed to see with my side vision on the right in the porthole huge red tulips and the edges of the rotor blades, which mowed tall grass and shrubs.
Zarul to the airport parking, at the persistent request of the commander, I, without waiting for the screws to stop, took out the cassette from the black box and lit up the film of the flight data recording system. This sometimes happens.
When inspecting the helicopter, we found that we hooked two wires. The upper one scratched the cockpit of the pilot and was torn on the windshield of the command cabin. At the same time leaving an elegant metallic curl on the frame of the windshield. The bottom wire went along the bottom of the helicopter and cut all the antennas there. But thanks to the army fraternity, which should be discussed separately, we managed to find everything we needed from the fighter’s techies and we returned home in good order.
Of course, Valera then apologized to us with the navigator, we washed this thing and should we say that the incident was kept secret for many years.