In a tragic incident that unfolded in the Gulf of Mexico, the remains of four men have been brought onshore five days after a helicopter crash near an oil rig. Following the Thursday crash, the U.S. Coast Guard tirelessly devoted countless hours to combing the waters off Louisiana, relentlessly searching for the missing passengers.
According to Petty Officer Jose Hernandez, a spokesperson for the Coast Guard’s 8th District based in New Orleans, the crash occurred around 8:40 a.m. CST, claiming the lives of the helicopter pilot and three oil platform workers.
The bodies of the victims have now been transported back to land in Port Fourchon. However, the exact timing of when the families will receive the remains remains unknown. The Bell 407 helicopter crashed while departing an oil platform, carrying three oil rig workers and a pilot. The subsequent steps involve the recovery of the aircraft and the soldiers, but the families are uncertain about the start of this process or when their loved ones will be returned home.
Among the families awaiting news is that of 36-year-old David Scarborough, who had just completed a two-week offshore shift and was en route home to spend Christmas with his loved ones. His wife, Lacy Scarborough, expressed her frustration in attempting to obtain updates on the search for her husband’s body.
Another passenger, Tim Graham from Quitman, Mississippi, was aboard the ill-fated helicopter, according to reports from the Clarke County Tribune. Efforts are underway to gather more information about Graham, and contact has been made with his family.
The helicopter involved in the crash is reportedly owned by Rotorcraft Leasing Company, according to U.S. Coast Guard Officer Jose Hernandez. However, the company has yet to issue a statement regarding the incident or disclose the names of the passengers and the pilot.
This incident now marks the third crash involving the Louisiana-based aircraft firm in 2022. Just two weeks ago, on December 15, another Rotorcraft helicopter experienced a distressing event near Terrebonne Bay, Louisiana, leaving three passengers stranded. Thankfully, the Coast Guard carried out a successful rescue operation to bring them to safety.
Tragically, on January 14, another Rotorcraft helicopter crashed into a marsh located in Lafourche Parish, claiming the lives of both the pilot and a passenger. These series of accidents raise concerns about the safety and operational practices of the company, leaving many searching for answers and demanding a closer examination of their operations.
Further scrutiny reveals that since 2004, there have been a total of 12 Rotorcraft accidents with 10 fatalities, as per the NTSB database, an agency that aims to complete its inquiry within two years.
As the investigation into the crashes and Rotorcraft Leasing Company unfolds, we extend our condolences and sympathies at Gordon McKernan Injury Attorneys to the families who were affected by these accidents.