Health & Safety Report 2013


Sixty per cent of the operational accidents occurred during flight, all of which are attributed to pilot error. The remaining 40 per cent occurred on the ground. Eighty-six per cent of the technical failures are due to dynamic component failures (main rotor gear box, main rotor blade and tail rotor). A structural issue accounts for the remaining 14 per cent. For accidents caused by external factors, 86 per cent of them were because of weather related events, including five lightning strikes and an encounter with a water spout. The final accident accounts for the remaining 14 per cent and was due to a very heavy helideck landing caused by adverse helideck environmental effects (caused by hot turbine exhaust plume). Offshore helicopter accident rates on the UKCS have been compared with the OGP’s worldwide fatal and non-fatal reportable accident rates for the period 1995 to 2010. This indicates that averaged over this time, offshore helicopter operations on the UKCS carry significantly less risk than operations elsewhere in the world. Whilst saying that, however, it is important to understand that helicopter operations in many parts of the world lack the regulatory, management and equipment sophistication when compared with the UK. Also, on the UKCS, helicopter operations are exclusively two-engine, two-pilot operations, whereas, for example, in the US Gulf Coast region and elsewhere there are a large number of small, single-engine helicopter and single-pilot operations. It is these types of operations that carry the largest percentage of accidents.

Figure 15: Comparison of Fatal and Non-Fatal Reportable Accident Rates, 1995 to 2010


Fatal Accident Rates (per 100,000 flying hours)

Non-Fatal Accident Rates (per 100,000 flying hours)


0.57 0.26

1.48 0.91


Source: OGP

page 27

Made with FlippingBook flipbook maker