NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Ditched Super Puma 'suffered main gearbox oil leak'

Neil Willox
The helicopter was brought back to Peterhead on Friday

A helicopter that ditched in the North Sea on Thursday suffered a main gearbox oil leak, BBC Scotland understands.

Air Accident investigators are due to begin examining the Bond EC 225 Super Puma, which was brought back to shore at Peterhead on Friday.

The pilots performed a controlled landing off the coast of Aberdeen. All 14 people on board escaped serious injury.

Operators Bond said it could not comment on the cause of the incident.

Bond has temporarily suspended flights of the same type of aircraft until a "detailed root cause investigation" is carried out into the incident by officials from the Air Accidents Investigation Branch and Eurocopter.

In a statement on Friday the operator said: "Bond Offshore Helicopters Ltd is committed to the safe operation of the company's entire fleet including the EC225 and for that reason flights can only recommence once they have completed a detailed analysis of the incident."

The helicopter was heading from Aberdeen to the Maersk Resilient and Ensco 102 drilling rigs - in the Jasmine field, operated by ConocoPhillips - when an oil pressure warning light came on.

Members of the Helicopter Safety Steering Group are due to meet on Monday to discuss the incident.

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