Don't confuse the type of contamination either. They get a lot of "dry" snow over there, compared to the "wet" snow over here, so it was probably deemed that it was not a factor. "Dry" snow won't stick or affect the airflow over the wings, unlike "wet" snow that will form ice at the surface.
There is no confusion. The regulations clearly state that *ANY*
contamination must be removed. Experience doesn't mean a thing. The rules are the rules and you follow them. Period.
Personally, I don't care what you guys have seen in the past or where. Anyone in the US, Canada, or Europe who flies with any contamination on the wing is doing so ILLEGALLY
. If they're flying under private rules, then it's unlikely they'll get caught or any penalties put upon them unless they kill someone other than themselves, but if you're being paid to fly passengers or cargo, you agree by that very pilot certificate to conduct yourself in a professional manner and to follow all the regulations, whether you like them or not. The regulations require that the top ALL
flight surfaces be free of contamination of any kind except for small amounts of frost on very specific areas depending on aircraft type and it's not an option. There's no arguing or disagreeing about it. It's written in stone and the report out of the Russian Air Ministry proves that it's the case even for Russia.
As for aircraft in Russia or the Eastern Bloc crashing due to icing - look about 2/3 down the link provided above. The following crashes are listed -
22.11.75, Balkan Bulgarian Airlines, Antonov An-24, LZ-ANA, Sofia-Vrazhdebna Airport (3 Fatal)
09.03.00, Vologda AP, Yak-40, RA-88170, Sheremetyevo Airport (9 Fatal)
I suspect this is not a complete list as the Soviet era accident statistics and reports are notoriously incomplete with many accidents simply being ignored.
Planes have crashed due to icing and snow accumulation, many on takeoff. The regulations are there for a reason - they were written in blood.