Helicopter Crashes in Dubai Killing 7

Friday, September 5, 2008
By George Hatcher

What: Aerogulf Bell 212 helicopter flying from Dubai International Airport to one of the oil fields in the Gulf Sea. The helicopter was leased to the oil company by the aircraft firm Aerogulf,
Where: Crashed into an oil platform off the Duba Coast 50 NM west of Dubai Airport
When: Sept 3–20:23 local time
Who: two pilots and five contractors working for British oil and gas services company Petrofac: an American, a Briton, two Indians, a Pakistani, one Filipino and a Venezuelan.
Why: The British pilot lost control during take off, hit a crane crashed and exploded wednesday on a recently installed Resilient jack-up oil rig. After the helicopter propellers hit the crane, the aircraft split in two; half smashed on to the rig, while the other half fell into the sea.

The rig is owned by AP Moller-Maersk but operated by Petrofac on behalf of state-owned Dubai Petroleum. Production in one of Dubai’s four oil fields has been suspended. The engine and the gear box have been found.

So far five of the bodies have been identified; one report says only two of the bodies need identification by DNA testing. All of the victims were contracted personnel.

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