The UK’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) published a further “special bulletin” late last week in its investigation into the controlled ditching of a Bond-operated EC225 medium twin in May in the North Sea, confirming an earlier hint by Eurocopter that the emergency lubrication system gave the pilots a false failure warning.
British investigators are focusing on a fractured bevel gear vertical drive shaft as a contributing factor in the North Sea ditching of a Bond Offshore Eurocopter EC225LP Super Puma (G-REDW) 20 nm east of Aberdeen, Scotland, on May 10. The UK’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) issued a bulletin late last week on its preliminary findings.
Each June, NBAA’s Flight Attendants Conference (FAC) promotes the professional development of full-time and contract flight attendants, flight technicians and cabin safety professionals. Hosted by the NBAA Flight Attendants Committee, it focuses on the importance of having trained flight attendants and technicians on board corporate aircraft and is a forum for discussing industry changes affecting cabin safety, security and service.
Eurocopter has issued a statement that essentially clears operator Bond Offshore Helicopters in the ditching of an EC225 medium twin in the North Sea last month. “At this stage of the investigation, neither procedure failure nor human error on the operator’s side have been identified as a potential contributor to the cause of the incident,” the manufacturer said.
Shell Oil announced on May 31 that it is pulling the plug on plans to sign a multimillion-dollar deal with UK-based Bond Offshore Helicopters to provide transportation within the UK.
A new Hawker Beechcraft King Air C90GTx delivered on Monday was ditched into the ocean some 17 miles north of Oranjestad, Aruba, the following day during the ferry flight to Brazil. An NTSB spokesman told AIN that the two Brazilian nationals flying the twin turboprop were unharmed in the ditching and subsequent rescue by the Dutch navy. The pilots declared an emergency after both engines lost power, said the NTSB, which is investigating the accident. The King Air sank in 4,000 feet of water.
The FAA is moving to redefine what “extremely remote” means when it comes to Part 29 certification provisions regarding loss of helicopter gearbox lubrication. The S-92 originally gained certification after Sikorsky convinced the FAA that complete loss of lubrication was extremely remote. Failure of the main rotor gearbox lubrication system is blamed for the fatal ditching of a Cougar Helicopters S-92A off Newfoundland in March 2009.
In an informal reader poll conducted on AINonline, readers chose Jack Pelton, the former CEO of Cessna Aircraft, by a margin of 46 percent (89 votes) to be the next FAA Administrator.
Bell 206L3, Gulf of Mexico, June 10, 2010–The Petroleum Helicopters LongRanger suffered a tail-rotor failure during a Part 135 flight from its base at Port O'Connor, Texas, to an offshore oil platform. The pilot inflated the emergency floats and attempted to make a water landing, after which the helicopter rolled over. All aboard escaped the inverted cabin and were rescued.
Although the outcome of US Airways Flight 1549 could not have been much better, the accident nevertheless prompted the National Transportation Safety Board to issue 33 recommendations to U.S. and European aviation authorities and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.