russian plane toronto

Massive Russian cargo plane amasses $100k parking bill and counting at Toronto airport

A Russian plane that has been stuck parked at Toronto Pearson International Airport has now racked up what may be the largest parking bill in the world, around a cool $100,000 and counting as of this week.

The gargantuan cargo plane — which is actually the largest of its kind — arrived in the city back in February, but has been unable to depart due to ongoing restrictions from the federal government.

Unfortunately for its operators, on the day the plane landed from Alaska, Ottawa issued a notice stating that "all aircraft owned, chartered or operated or otherwise controlled by a person connected with Russia, or which is registered in Russia... are prohibited to enter, exit or overfly Canada's airspace" due to the nation's attack on Ukraine.

This has left the vehicle chilling in limbo for months on Taxiway N, where the authority that manages Pearson has been charging it parking fees that have added up quickly.

At 74 cents a minute, the charges are extremely hefty for, say, a space in a downtown Toronto parking lot, but standard for a chunk of valuable airport tarmac as big as the one taken up by the Antonov An-124.

Over the course of the unexpected stay, the bill has accumulated to a whopping $93,000 CAD as of Thursday, on top of which there will be another 12k or so in GST.

Meanwhile, the clock is still ticking away and accruing more charges as the vehicle sits in wait until airspace rules change, whenever that may be.

Some who have flouted the ban have faced fines of around $15,000 per carrier and $3,000 per pilot from Transport Canada — pennies compared to what Russia's Volga-Dnepr Airlines will be paying by the time they get the craft, which was delivering COVID tests, out of here.

In the meantime, interested residents can get up-close and personal to see the ultra-rare plane from various vantage points near the airport.

Lead photo by

Jack Landau

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