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North Sea helicopter crash inquiry to be heard remotely

The Super Puma ditched into the sea near Shetland in 2013 with the loss of four lives.

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The wreckage of the Super Puma L2 helicopter which went down in the North Sea with the loss of four lives (Danny Lawson/PA)

The wreckage of the Super Puma L2 helicopter which went down in the North Sea with the loss of four lives (Danny Lawson/PA)

The wreckage of the Super Puma L2 helicopter which went down in the North Sea with the loss of four lives (Danny Lawson/PA)

A fatal accident inquiry (FAI) into a North Sea helicopter crash that killed four people is to be held remotely so no more time is lost.

The Super Puma was carrying 18 people when it ditched on its approach to Sumburgh, Shetland, in 2013.

Sarah Darnley, 45, from Elgin, Moray; Gary McCrossan, 59, from Inverness; Duncan Munro, 46, from Bishop Auckland, County Durham, and George Allison, 57, from Winchester, Hampshire, all died in the incident.

The FAI into the crash had been scheduled for May but was adjourned due to the coronavirus pandemic.

To avoid further delay, a preliminary hearing will now be held virtually on Friday June 5, when a date will be set for the full inquiry.

Derek Pyle, sheriff principal of Grampian, Highland and Islands, said: “I have been very concerned about the time that has passed since the accident and feel that, despite the challenges, the inquiry should be held remotely so that no further time is lost.

“An enormous amount of work has been carried out behind the scenes to make this possible and I am grateful to the Crown Office, court staff and all the other FAI participants for their commitment.”

PA