Shetland Crash Survivor Demands Answers As Memorial Service Is Held For Victims

Victim Instructs Specialist Aviation Lawyers In Search For Justice


An offshore oil worker seriously injured in a fatal Super Puma helicopter crash off the coast of Shetland in August has spoken of his need for answers about the cause of the tragedy, as a memorial service is held to remember those who died in the incident.

James Nugent, 41, from Newquay, suffered a spinal injury and concussion injuries in the incident on August 23rd, when four people died after a CHC-operated Super Puma AS332 L2 came down during a journey to Sumburgh Airport.

Ahead of the UK Oil and Gas Industry’s annual remembrance service at the Kirk of St Nicholas, Union St, Aberdeen at 2.00pm on 26 of October, James is calling for authorities to work quickly and thoroughly to provide answers over what went wrong in the crash – the fifth such accident in around four years – and ultimately how flight safety can be improved in the future.

As part of his search for answers, he has now instructed Irwin Mitchell’s specialist Aviation Law team. The experts act for victims and the families of those killed in air accidents across the world, notably also representing victims injured the ditching in the North Sea of a Eurocopter helicopter on October 2012.

Expert Opinion
The number of crashes involving helicopters on journeys from offshore sites in recent years is incredibly worrying and a clear indication that something needs to be done to review and improve safety standards.

"A special bulletin has already been released by the Air Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB) into this latest crash and found no evidence of a technical failure in relation to the helicopter. Attention has to turn to other factors, most notably the operational aspects of the flight including the actions of the crew and why the helicopter was allowed to enter into flight parameters that caused it to lose lift and rapidly descend.

"We have now heard first-hand from our client of the terrible details of this tragedy and he is desperate for answers over how this happened, as well as what will be done to prevent this from happening again. We are determined to help him get the justice he deserves."
Jim Morris, Partner

James Nugent, who is originally from South Africa, suffered back injury to his lower lumbar region and continues to suffer severe headaches due to post concussion trauma, is receiving ongoing medical support for  his experiences two months ago.

He said: “There is obviously a need to fully understand what happened in this awful incident, it was so tragic and simply no one deserves to die whilst being transported home from work - like myself we all just wanted to get home to our families after a long time working offshore.

“The accident has destroyed my short lived career working offshore and the same for others that were also in the accident. I just want answers over what has happened and for someone to take responsibility for the fact that 16 passengers and two pilots were in a horrific aviation accident that should never have happened.”

Expert Opinion
We have now commenced our own enquiries into the crash off the coast of Shetland and will be following developments in the AAIB investigations very closely.

"The ultimate aim needs to be to determine whether anything can be done to further improve flight safety in relation to offshore helicopter journeys, for instance additional training for flight crews and/ or improvements to the helicopter warning systems to alert pilots if they are approaching a dangerous area of the flight envelope.

"Lessons simply must be learned in relation to the crash."
Jim Morris, Partner