Bristow confirms fatal S-92 North Sea crash


Bristow has confirmed the crash of an S-92 with one fatality and five crew injuries. Photocredit: Bristow.

Bristow Group has confirmed the crash of a search and rescue (SAR) S-92 helicopter off the coast of Norway, which resulted in one fatality and five crew injuries.

The helicopter, registration LN-OIJ, carrying six crew was involved in an accident yesterday during a training exercise about 15 nautical miles west of Bergen, Norway.

“It is with deep sadness that we can report one fatality has been confirmed,” the operator said in a statement.  “The other five crew members have varying levels of injuries. Our thoughts are with all those affected during this incredibly difficult period.”

Bristow has mobilised its incident response team and is providing assistance to family members of those onboard and fully cooperating with authorities responding to the incident. “Our highest priority is to take care of our crew and their family members and provide them with any assistance needed,” it said.

Anders Opedal, CEO, Equinor said: “This is a deeply tragic incident. Today is a difficult day for many, and our thoughts are with the families, close ones and others affected.”  Everyone on board the helicopter was on assignment for Equinor. “Our key task now is to help take care of those involved. We express our thanks to the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre and everyone involved in the rescue operation and the ongoing work,” he added.

Equinor said the cause of the accident is not yet known. The company has halted all regular flights on the Norwegian continental shelf “out of consideration for those affected and to gain an overview of the situation”. Equinor is cooperating closely with Bristow Norway and relevant authorities in the handling and follow-up of the incident.

Meanwhile, Sara Dhariwal, senior aviation analyst and lead appraiser, Ascend wrote on the social networking platform LinkedIn: Very sad to learn about the S-92A fatal crash off the coast of Norway yesterday. My thoughts go out to the friends and families of the crew.”

The aircraft, LN-OIJ, has been operated in a SAR role by Bristow since first delivery in 2012, and purchased on a sale-and-lease back basis to Milestone in 2013, according to Cirium.

“At the time of the crash, the aircraft was on a training exercise for Equinor, wrote Dhariwal. “The cause is not yet known and the oil firm has suspended all flights in Norway and in the UK until 13.00 on the 29th February 2024.