Oil workers rescued as helicopter ditches in North Sea

Nineteen people were safely rescued after a helicopter ditched in the North Sea yesterday. The CHC Super Puma helicopter, which made a “controlled ditching” between Orkney and Shetland, was transporting […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

Nineteen people were safely rescued after a helicopter ditched in the North Sea yesterday.

The CHC Super Puma helicopter, which made a “controlled ditching” between Orkney and Shetland, was transporting workers from Aberdeen to West Phoenix drilling rig. The incident occurred at around 15.30pm yesterday off Fair Isle, around 32 miles south of Shetland.

Nick Mair, CHC’s Regional Vice President at Western North Sea said: “CHC’s primary objective is always the safety of our passengers and people and our pilots took actions today consistent with that commitment. We are delighted that our passengers and colleagues are safe and no one was injured. We think that the right thing to do is hold all scheduled flights using all Super Puma aircraft pending receipt of further technical information.”

He added an investigation is underway into the cause of the incident.

Bob Lauder, Health and Safety Policy Manager at trade body Oil & Gas UK said: “Oil & Gas UK is pleased to hear that all 19 people on board this helicopter have been successfully rescued. This is testament to the skill of the pilots, as well as the comprehensive survival training which all offshore workers must undergo to prepare them for this type of situation. We now await more information on the cause of this incident.”

It was the fourth accident involving a Super Puma helicopter in just over three years, with one of the aircrafts forced to ditch earlier this year.