Shell suspends flights through CHC in Norway following fatal helicopter crash


Oil giant Shell has suspended all helicopter flights through operator CHC as a result of the fatal aircraft crash that killed 13 passengers in Norway last week and said it was “working to find alternative helicopter service providers” to temporarily support its operations in Norway.

The aircraft involved was an EC255 Super Puma that sources close to Helicopter Investor have revealed to be worth $27.5 million.

Both Norwegian and UK civil aviation authorities have moved to ground the model of helicopter that crashed. It crashed near Bergen on Norway’s southwestern coast last Friday (29 April). A Scottish man killed in the crash was confirmed as 41-year-old oil worker Iain Stuart from Laurencekirk in Aberdeenshire who worked for the oil field services company Halliburton.

A spokesman for the company said: “Shell has with sadness followed the reports of the tragic event outside Bergen in Norway. Our thoughts and condolences go out to the families and colleagues of the victims. We are confident that every measure will be taken to reveal the cause of the accident and to ensure the safety of the people of our industry.

“In light of the tragic accident on Friday, A/S Norske Shell wishes to engage with CHC HS in Norway to reaffirm that all operational requirements are met to the defined standards. This process involves Shell’s global air transport assurance provider (Shell Aircraft).”

The energy company said that as a precaution, it had decided to temporarily suspend all CHC HS passenger flights for Shell in Norway.

“We are working to find alternative helicopter service providers to temporarily support our operations in Norway, and continue to work closely with CHC HS to complete the verification process. Shell continues to use CHC for offshore services globally outside Norway,” the spokesman added.

Norway’s Accident Investigation Board said yesterday (3 May) that a technical error was almost certainly behind the helicopter crash.