Inquest closes into helicopter pilot death

First published in Local

THE inquest into the death of Droitwich helicopter pilot Richard Menzies has closed at Worcestershire Coroner’s Court with a narrative verdict.

The coroner recorded that 24-year-old Mr Menzies, had died at approximately 2pm on April 1, 2009, when his helicopter crashed into the North Sea approximately 15 miles off Ratray Head in Scotland.

The inquest, which was originally opened on April 21, 2009, had been adjourned while a separate fatal accident inquiry had looked into the cause of the crash, which saw the Eurocopter Super Puma plunge into the water off the Aberdeenshire coast, killing 14 oil workers and two crew members, including the Droitwich co-pilot.

That inquiry reported its findings in March of this year, stating that the accident was avoidable, and was due to tiny fragments of metal called spallings shearing away from helicopter’s machinery and causing the gearbox to fail.

The finding of the inquiry were disputed by the Air Accident Investigation Branch which said they could not be proved beyond reasonable doubt.

The coroner recorded a narrative verdict at Mr Menzies’ inquest, saying that he had died of multiple injuries.

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