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S-92 Cougar Flight 491 - Federal Minister of Transport, Chuck Strahl, asked to investigate Certification of the S-92 aircraft by families of the victims killed and the sole crash survivor

Thursday, February 24th 2011 10:33:30am

Media Advisory


Victims of Cougar 491*


Crash of Cougar Flight 491 (Sikorsky S-92 helicopter), March 12, 2009 off the coast of Newfoundland

Federal Minister of Transport, Chuck Strahl, asked to investigate Certification of the S-92 aircraft by families of the victims killed and the sole crash survivor


The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) released its final report on the crash on February 9, 2011.  In the interim, families of the passengers killed and the sole survivor have had time to review the Report and believe fundamental issues related to the S-92's Certification have not been addressed.

The letter to Federal Minister for Transportation, Infrastructure and Communities Chuck Strahl, calls for an investigation of the Transport Canada Certification process. It contains a detailed chronology of the Certification process and the inability of the Main Gear Box (MGB) to meet the "30 minute run dry standard." This refers to the requirement that a helicopter rotor MGB will operate for 30 minutes after complete loss of lubricating oil.      

The letter requests Minister Strahl answer a key question. "Did Transport Canada succumb to pressure of the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) or Sikorsky, or did they simply fail to recognize a serious safety/certification issue?"

It is important to realize that the individuals writing the letter and seeking answers are motivated to advance aircraft safety and remain concerned for workers still being transported in S-92's off the Newfoundland coast. There is no financial gain for these families, because their legal claims have been resolved.

The complete text of the letter is attached or can be found at:
http://ecostrategy.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/letter.pdf

For more information or to schedule and interviews with a spokesperson of the survivor's family, please contact:
Don Huff, Environmental Communication Options, 416-972-7401 (office), 416-805-7720 (cell) or huffd@ecostrategy.ca.

*The group, Victims of Cougar 491 is comprised of the following individuals (listed below) who are signators of the letter sent to Minister Strahl:

Brenda Anwyll, Janet Breen, Cecilia Corbett, Robert Decker, Wanda Drake, Melinda Duggan, Karen Eddy, Janet Escott, Susan March, Richard and Marjorie Maher, Heather Warren, Roxanne Mullowney, Marilyn Nash, Lori Chynn, and Sharon Pike