chapter  5
Fifth Session, 16 April 1940, Evening
Pages 42

KULIK (Chairman): I give the floor to Comrade Rychagov. RYCHAGOV (Corps Commander, Commander of the 9th Army's air

force): I shall report on the operations of the 9th Army's air force. We began to operate in the Ukhta sector. The Finns felt it, approximately from 25 December, when the first regiments arrived. We had 25-30 planes at the maximum on the Ukhta direction. The reasons. First, there was only one aerodrome in this sector, 150 m wide and 800 m long. We landed up to 40 various planes on this aerodrome, including civilian aircraft. The planes could not all fly from there at once. Had they all taken off, it would have taken enormous time to land them back. Another circumstance that hindered our work was that there was no other place to land a plane within 200 km. That is, had we needed to land a plane with a wheel shot through on that strip, it would have to have make a belly-landing, as we say. In case of a belly-landing, all the other planes would have found no place to land and would have crash-landed beyond the aerodrome.