HeliOffshore operators are working with UK and Norwegian authorities to release the technical data used to justify their decision on 7 July to lift operating restrictions on Airbus Helicopters H225LP and AS332L2 Super Puma helicopters. The offshore helicopter industry’s global safety association says that without having all available data its members cannot determine whether or not a sound safety case can be made for returning the aircraft to service.
Technical experts from HeliOffshore will seek access to all available data including that used by Airbus to support changes to the process for inspecting and replacing main rotor components.
As the UK and Norwegian authorities have acknowledged, the lifting of operating restrictions does not automatically clear the way to an immediate return to service for the Super Puma fleet. Operators first have to prepare and validate a detailed safety case, including specific maintenance processes, tooling and training.
“Our operators have to take account of the overall safety case including factors such as exactly how each aircraft is operated, where it will be flown, and maintenance requirements,” explained HeliOffshore CEO Gretchen Haskins.
“There is a clear consensus among HeliOffshore operators that sharing information and working collectively to evaluate the key tenants of the safety case is will be the most effective way to fulfil our obligations to the safety of our passengers and crew. Any preparations for a possible return to service for the Super Pumas must be conducted in an extremely methodical manner, in line with our shared commitment to the highest standards of operational safety.”
“HeliOffshore is continuing to engage with all stakeholders to ensure that the most up-to-date information is available from a safety perspective to ensure they can make the appropriate safety decisions subject to their operational accountability requirements.”
“We work collaboratively with all stakeholders in pursuit of our shared goal of eliminating accidents and ensuring safety for the passengers and crew who travel to work offshore” concluded Mrs Haskins.
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