Puma Gearbox Metal Shavings Conflict

Tuesday, January 21, 2014
By George Hatcher

The gearbox is a center of controversy in the investigation of the accident where the Bond Super Puma crashed off Peterhead, killing 16 men including two crew: Capt Paul Burnham, 31, of Methlick, Aberdeenshire, and co-pilot Richard Menzies, 24, of Droitwich Spa, who worked for Bond Offshore Helicopters, KCA Deutag employees Brian Barkley, 30, of Aberdeen; Vernon Elrick, 41, of Aberdeen; Leslie Taylor, 41, of Kintore, Aberdeenshire; Nairn Ferrier, 40, of Dundee; Gareth Hughes, 53, of Angus; David Rae, 63, of Dumfries; Raymond Doyle, 57, of Cumbernauld; James John Edwards, 33, of Liverpool; Nolan Goble, 34, of Norwich, and Mihails Zuravskis, 39, of Latvia; and non employees James Costello, 24, of Aberdeen, who was contracted to Production Services Network (PSN); Alex Dallas, 62, of Aberdeen, who worked for Sparrows Offshore Services; Warren Mitchell, 38, of Oldmeldrum, Aberdeenshire, who worked for Weatherford UK; and Stuart Wood, 27, of Aberdeen, who worked for Expro North Sea Ltd.

The inquiry blames the crash on gearbox failure, but for Bond and French company Eurocopter the question remains exactly where metal particles (evidence!) were found in the gearbox.

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