It has been a very bad year so far for helicopters ferrying passengers to and from offshore oil platforms. Today comes word of another tragedy involving BP workers:
Sixteen people were feared to have been killed today when a helicopter crashed into the sea off north-east Scotland.
Police said eight bodies had been recovered from the North Sea while the remaining eight people who had been onboard were unaccounted for.
The aircraft was returning from an oil platform just before 2pm when it went down 35 miles off the Aberdeenshire coast, according to the coastguard. Police said the aircraft was believed to have been flying back to Aberdeen from BP’s Miller platform in the North Sea.
The picture in the video below (which discusses the crash) shows the helicopter platform in Aberdeen which was just next to my office and ferried workers back and forth to the platforms. (My house was 3 miles beyond those hills in the background).
The victims would have been at the end of an extended offshore rotation, looking forward to getting back home to friends and family. Last month off the coast of Canada another crash killed 17 workers. The month before, another one that went down in the North Sea had a happier ending with everyone surviving.
I previously documented the training all offshore workers in the North Sea have to go through in Surviving Survival Training.