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Recovery and Investigation Update: Helicopter Wreckage Retrieved off Norwegian Coast

Recovery and Investigation Update: Helicopter Wreckage Retrieved off Norwegian Coast


Investigators have recovered the wreckage of the helicopter that ditched off the coast of Norway on Wednesday night.

The Norwegian Safety Investigation Authority (NSIA) stated that the S-92 helicopter, registered LN-IOJ, was found on the sea floor by an ROV at approximately 20:14 on Friday night (March 1).

Recovery occurred throughout the night, and the helicopter has been transported to the Haakonsvern naval base.

NSTA has released images depicting the discovery at a depth of around 220 meters and the subsequent recovery operation.

Preparation of the wreckage and initial investigations will proceed over the weekend, leading up to a press conference on Monday (March 4), according to investigators.

Equinor nurse Reidun Hestetun (61) lost her life in the incident, with five others hospitalized. The Normand Ocean offshore vessel, operated by DeepOcean, has been enlisted to assist in the search for the wreckage.

The primary focus is on retrieving the black box flight recorder to gain more insights into the incident.

The Norwegian coast guard has salvaged other floating wreckage, which has been handed over to the NSIA.

Tributes have poured in for Reidun Hestetun, described by friends and colleagues as "humble, caring, and tough at the same time."

In a statement by Equinor, made in consultation with her family, colleagues portrayed her as "someone who people listened to, and someone who many felt they could confide in."

The Bristow-operated search and rescue helicopter ditched in the sea around 7:30 pm on Wednesday night near the Norwegian island of Sotra.

The incident occurred during a training exercise for the state-backed oil firm Equinor and involved "low-altitude training flights."

Despite a temporary halt, Equinor and other operators have resumed S-92 flights more widely, in coordination with the country's civil aviation authority, citing "no indications" that broader helicopter safety has been compromised.

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Published: 03-03-2024

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