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Helicopter tragedy: bodies returned
A diver works on the wreckage of the Super Puma L2 helicopter which went down about two miles west of Sumburgh airport on Shetland
The bodies of three of the four oil workers who died when a helicopter plunged into the North Sea have been brought back to the mainland.
A passenger ferry carrying the bodies arrived at Aberdeen Harbour at 7am. It is understood that the fourth body will arrive on Tuesday.
The Super Puma was carrying 16 passengers and two crew from the Borgsten Dolphin platform when it crashed into the sea off Shetland on Friday evening, killing three men and one woman. It is not yet known what caused the CHC-operated helicopter to crash into the sea as it approached Sumburgh airport on the southern tip of the main island.
Rescuers recovered three bodies in the aftermath of the incident and the fourth was removed from the wreckage on Sunday.
Tributes have been paid to the victims, named as Duncan Munro, 46, from Bishop Auckland, County Durham; George Allison, 57, from Winchester, Hampshire; Sarah Darnley, 45, from Elgin in the Highlands; and 59-year-old Gary McCrossan, from Inverness.
It is understood the wreckage has now been loaded on to a vessel and is expected to be transported to shore today for examination by a team from the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB).
Senior management staff from the helicopter's manufacturer, Eurocopter, part of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company have arrived in Aberdeen.
Guillaume Faury, Eurocopter's chief executive, said: "We all at Eurocopter are deeply saddened by this accident. This is a tragedy for all of us. We express our deepest sympathies to the families, friends and colleagues of those who lost their lives. Our thoughts are with all those affected, including the workforce in the North Sea.
"We also wish to acknowledge all those persons involved in the search and rescue operations. Their prompt and professional action saved many lives and for that we are sincerely thankful. At this point in time, limited technical information is available regarding the cause of this accident. Eurocopter's experts are in Aberdeen working closely with the investigation authorities to determine the cause."
It is hoped information on the helicopter's black box recorder will help establish the cause of the crash. Super Puma flights to and from UK offshore installations have been suspended, prompting a meeting of oil and gas industry chiefs today to discuss the impact on platform workers.