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  1. #1
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    Default Helicopter Crash in North Sea

    I thought I'd quote this as Dave Taylor, who works out on an oil rig, was mentioning how dangerous it was getting the chopper out there.

    All 18 people aboard a helicopter which ditched in the North Sea as it |approached an oil platform escaped almost unscathed in an incident that coastguards said was “on the level of the Hudson River in the States”.

    The Super Puma aircraft was carrying a change of crew to a rig 120 miles east of Aberdeen when it went down within 500 metres of the platform.

    Oilmen on the rig, who witnessed the accident at 6.40pm yesterday, watched the water around the crash site for survivors as a major rescue operation was launched. Aberdeen Coastguard issued a mayday signal diverting vessels in the area to the scene and the RAF scrambled a Nimrod search aircraft and Sea King helicopters.

    Lifejacket lights were spotted in the water, three flares were seen close to the platform and signals from locator beacons attached to the lifejackets were picked up. The helicopter’s life rafts were spotted at around 8pm and by 9.15pm the 16 passengers and two crew members had been picked up.

    Three were plucked from the sea by a helicopter and put down on the platform before a combination of poor weather and the downdraft of the rotors made the operation too dangerous. The other 15 were rescued by the rig’s standby vessel, Caledonian Victory.

    The Super Puma had landed upright and was kept afloat by airbags designed to deploy when the craft landed on water, said RAF Flt-Sgt James Lyne. Inside, the passengers and crew were wearing survival suits, affording them a degree of protection from the chilly waters. “Within a few minutes of the aircraft ditching we had rescue aircraft on route,” he said.

    “Luckily, the crew and passengers were able to get out safely. They were pretty well equipped. The big danger is if it is high seas because then the aircraft will land and turn upside down.”

    Mark Clark,of the Coastguard Agency, likened their survival to that of the 155 people aboard the US Airways flight which defied the odds against a successful crash-landing to ditch safely in New York’s Hudson River last month. “They’re clearly traumatised and they’re cold, but they’re walking wounded,” he said. They were transferred to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.

    The cause of the crash was unclear. Mr Clark said the weather was “moderate” but added that darkness had hampered the rescue operation and the cloud base was below the platform’s heli-deck at about 500 metres. Visibility was down to half a nautical mile, with a swell of two to three metres. The accident happened in BP’s Eastern Trough Area Production oilfield.

    The Super Puma was owned by Bond Offshore Helicopters, which provides air transport for the North Sea’s oil and gas installations. The aircraft is regarded as the workhorse of the oilfields and, given the number of trips made between Aberdeen and the platforms – 50 a day, according to Jake Molloy of the RMT union – accidents are rare. The Super Puma had a “pretty good” safety record and the last fatal accident was two years ago, Mr Molloy said.
    Great to hear that everybody survived. It's actually pretty damn amazing! Good work from the rescue crews.
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  2. #2
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    Default

    When I saw this I immediately thought of Dave. I think he was already on the rig but I've emailed him to make sure.

  3. #3
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    I thought of Dave too!

    He was due to go back to the rigs on Tuesday 10th Feb for two weeks, so if that's the case he was already out there.

  4. #4
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    Perhaps we could send him a blanket and some lemsip anyway?
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  5. #5
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    He's fine by the way. His next helicopter trip isn't until next tuesday.

  6. #6
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    I thought of Dave, and was relieved to hear that all 18 were rescued.

    That must have been terrifying.

  7. #7
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    I often think of Dave, but that's another thread entirely.

    I'm glad everyone was OK.

  8. #8
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    The crash was probably caused by an evil parasitic weed creature in the helicopter's plunge sprockets.
    For every fail, there is an equal and opposite win.

    ...Oh, who am I kidding?

  9. #9
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    Apparently there has been another Helicopter Crash with 8 dead.

  10. #10
    Pip Madeley Guest

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    Terrible. I'm glad Dave Taylor has reported he is safe and well though.

  11. #11
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    I spoke to him this afternoon.

  12. #12
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    The weed creature strikes again.
    For every fail, there is an equal and opposite win.

    ...Oh, who am I kidding?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pip Madeley View Post
    Terrible. I'm glad Dave Taylor has reported he is safe and well though.
    Thank goodness. I heard it on the radio driving home and haven't stopped worrying until now
    Bazinga !

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pip Madeley View Post
    I'm glad Dave Taylor has reported he is safe and well though.
    That's good to hear.

  15. #15
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    I have to admit, when I heard this news my first thought was about Dave. Glad to hear he's not involved.

  16. #16
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    I've been wondering how Dave is a fair bit recently anyway. Good to know he's alright.

  17. #17
    Wayne Guest

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    Very sad to hear about the crash.

    No doubt Dave's off watching 'Prisoner: Cell Block H' somewhere.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirk Gently View Post
    Apparently there has been another Helicopter Crash with 8 dead.
    All 16 appear to have died. They're still looking for the bodies but none of the missing 8 are expected to be alive now. That's about 100 people killed in incidents like this over the last 30 years or so.

  19. #19
    Wayne Guest

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    Poor sods.

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