Almost three-quarters of the world’s fleet of EC225 ‘Super Puma’ helicopters are now back in service, says Eurocopter. The helicopter was grounded in 2012 after ditchings into the UK’s North Sea.

“The return to service of the suspended EC225 fleet following the controlled ditchings in 2012 is proceeding according to plan, with 51% of the Oil & Gas fleet having resumed flight,” said Eurocopter.

“This means that approximately 75% (121 aircraft) of the global EC225/725 fleet is now in operation.”

Since July 2013, 45 out of 89 suspended aircraft have resumed full services. Nearly 10 operators in regions including Aberdeen, Norway, Australia, the United States and Angola are now flying.

Meanwhile Eurocopter says it fully supports the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA)’s decision to launch an independent review of offshore helicopter operations in the North Sea.

The study, to be conducted in partnership with the Norwegian CAA, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and a panel of independent experts, will recommend ways to improve the safety of helicopter flying in this important Oil & Gas market.

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