CONSERVATIVE
New Forest East

SCOTLAND – NORTH SEA HELICOPTER CRASH – 2 April 2009

Dr Julian Lewis: I am sure that the whole House is grateful to the Secretary of State for sharing with us so fully such information as he has. Can he tell us whether his preliminary talks with the recovery services, as well as focusing on their hope to regain the data buoys, and the voice recorder in particular, have indicated whether there is any prospect of recovering any substantial part of the crashed helicopter? That would be of crucial significance in establishing what went wrong.

[The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr Jim Murphy): The hon. Gentleman is right. What happened last evening and this morning was that parts of the debris of the craft were recovered and, more importantly, the bodies of those who have been confirmed dead were recovered. Work is ongoing at this very moment to discover the precise locations of the different parts of the aircraft and the eight who are still missing. The technology involved in the North sea industry is so remarkable that we can have a degree of confidence that we will quickly be able to track the precise location of the remaining parts of the helicopter, as well as great and continuing hope and determination to track and find the remains of the eight who are still missing.]