Bristow Helicopters has commenced payment of compensation to victims of last year’s August helicopter crash involving one of its helicopters in the Oworonshoki area of Lagos.
In all, Bristow said it had paid a total of $360,000 (N70.9 million) to the 12 people on board at $30,000 per victim, made up of 10 passengers and two crew members.
This was disclosed in Lagos yesterday by the airline’s Senior Legal Director, Mr. Tolu Olabajo while briefing the media on the lifting of suspension clamped on it by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) following last month’s ditch of another chopper in the Atlantic Ocean.
Olabajo, who described the package as advance payment, further disclosed that arrangements are on to pay another round of compensation to the four dead victims, adding that the airline is waiting for the various insurance companies to work out the packages, which he said, would vary because of the differences in the official statuses of the victims.
Olabajo said the lifting of the suspension by the NCAA came after the airline had successfully carried out a thorough audit of all the Sikorsky helicopters in its fleet, one of which was involved in the February mishap.
The director further disclosed that as part of effort to be double sure the it carries out the best audit that is available in the world on the Sikorsky fleet and on all its facilities, the airline has secured the service of a UK-based international firm to carry out extensive audit of the fleet in addition to the one by the NCAA and the regular and mandatory checks it carries out on its facilities.
Meanwhile, in order to ensure that the best is obtained from the Sikorsky model, Bristow has enjoined all sister-airlines using the model to also subject those in their fleet to integrity audit so that experience and knowledge could be shared by those using the model.