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Helicopter ditches in North Sea: none injured

10 May 2012

Twelve passengers and two crew were on board a helicopter that ditched 40km off the coast of Aberdeen shortly after midday on May 10. The EC225 helicopter, operated by Bond Offshore, was carrying contractors from Aberdeen to the Maersk Resilient and Ensco 102 rigs.

The EC225 helicopter was able to ditch, with no casualties
The EC225 helicopter was able to ditch, with no casualties

A spokesman for Bond said: “A low pressure oil warning light came on and the helicopter made a controlled descent and landed in the North Sea. It didn't crash.”

A Maritime and Coastguard Agency spokesman said that all people on board transferred to a liferaft and rescue units were soon on the scene, with nine having been evacuated to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary by mid-afternoon. All but one were discharged after checkups.

This is the first significant helicopter emergency since April 2009, when 16 people on board another Bond Super Puma helicopter were killed after a major gearbox failure caused it to crash into the North Sea.

In February 2009 another Bond helicopter crashed from a low level into the North Sea in thick fog. All 18 passengers survived, with a few minor injuries.

Following the latest incident, Bond said it would be grounding its fleet of four EC225s until further notice.

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