Helicopter Crashes In Auckland Harbour

MERT Worldwide – Aviation

The New Zealand Navy responded to the MAYDAY call and rescued two survivors.

Do you have an AVIATION crash plan in place?

Would you like your crash plan validated by experts in this field?

What are your SOP – Standard Operating Procedures for helicopter DITCHING?

What is your priority should your helicopter or a visiting helicopter have engine failure and have to ditch?

MERT Worldwide can and will validate your Aviation Crash plan. I will however offer guidance in this post.While designing a SOP for Helicopter Ditch the first priority is rescue survivors.  The second priority is salvage if possible.  These are very broad statements but I will attempt to break that down when validating SOP’s for helicopter ditching.

Priority One – Rescue

How will you carry out the rescue, do you have a fast response vessel available to get to the scene of the incident – RHIB, inflatable.
What equipment is required to affect a safe rescue of the crew – A knife to cut seat belts to free trapped air crew and passengers for example?
Is a member of your crew capable of conducting advanced medical care for injured crew and passengers in the helicopter?

Priority Two – Salvage

What equipment is carried on board to assist keeping the Helicopter afloat – Flotation Bags? What assistance will you require from other rescue agencies what equipment will they need that you currently do not carry.
What processes or SOP do you have for a helicopter Crash on Deck?

MERT Worldwide can validate you current SOP’s or we will make recommendation to improve your current SOP.
Maritime aviation is a high risk evolution, there are many things the crew can do to mitigate all risk. There is normally no warning and if there was a warning the air crew will ditch in the sea. What happens in the event of un-alerted emergency?  The only way to prepare is to train and regular train for helicopter emergencies.

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