Page last updated at 16:29 GMT, Thursday, 2 April 2009 17:29 UK

Victims of helicopter crash named

Photos of ten of the victims have been released

Victims of the North Sea Super Puma helicopter crash in which 16 people died have been named by police.

Eight came from north east Scotland, with the others from Angus, Dundee, Dumfries, Cumbernauld, Liverpool, Norwich, the West Midlands, and Latvia.

The 15 people named by Grampian Police were aged between 24 and 63. One person has still to be named.

Eight bodies were found after the Bond Super Puma came down 14 miles off the Aberdeenshire coast on Wednesday.

Police said there was no hope of finding any survivors and the search is now being treated as a recovery operation.

The victims named by police were Captain Paul Burnham, 31, of Methlick, Aberdeenshire, and co-pilot Richard Menzies, 24, of Droitwich Spa, who worked for Bond Offshore Helicopters.

This is a dreadful tragedy to befall the industry
The Reverend Andrew Jolly
UK oil and gas industry chaplain

The KCA Deutag employees killed were Brian Barkley, 30, of Aberdeen; Vernon Elrick, 41, of Aberdeen; Leslie Taylor, 41, of Kintore, Aberdeenshire; Nairn Ferrier, 40, of Dundee; Gareth Hughes, 53, of Angus; David Rae, 63, of Dumfries; Raymond Doyle, 57, of Cumbernauld; James John Edwards, 33, of Liverpool; and Nolan Carl Goble, 34, of Norwich.

The other named victims were James Costello, 24, of Aberdeen, who was contracted to Production Services Network (PSN); Alex Dallas, 62, of Aberdeen, who worked for Sparrows Offshore Services; Warren Mitchell, 38, of Oldmeldrum, Aberdeenshire, who worked for Weatherford UK; and Stuart Wood, 27, of Aberdeen, who worked for Expro North Sea Ltd.

PSN chief executive officer Bob Keiller said he was "deeply saddened" by the death of James Costello.

"James was a computer enthusiast who started his career in new media development but was eager to join the offshore oil and gas industry," he said.

"He first worked for us in January 2006 in a variety of roles and was a planner on the BP project. His colleagues have paid tribute to a young man's enthusiasm and passion for his job.

Gareth Hughes
Gareth Hughes was among the victims of the crash

"Our deepest sympathies go to James' mother Verona and the rest of his family, friends and colleagues. The oil industry has lost one of its brightest prospects and he will be sorely missed."

Expro chief executive officer Graeme Coutts said of Stuart Wood: "Everyone at Expro is deeply saddened by this tragic event and the loss of Stuart, who was a well-liked member of our team who had a promising career ahead of him."

First Minister Alex Salmond has raised the possibility of a public inquiry into the crash.

Book of condolences have been opened in Aberdeen, and Dundee City Council has opened a book in memory of Nairn Ferrier.

The Reverend Andrew Jolly, chaplain for the UK oil and gas industry, said: "This is a dreadful tragedy to befall the industry. The families of those affected by this tragedy and the wider family of those who work offshore and onshore are in our thoughts and prayers."

In February another Super Puma operated by BP crashed in the North Sea.

On that occasion all 18 people on board survived when the helicopter ditched 125 miles east of Aberdeen.

An emergency contact number for relatives concerned about people possibly involved in the North Sea Helicopter incident has been issued. The number is 0845 600 5 900.

North Sea helicopter crashes in 2009
North Sea helicopter crashes

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