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RAF Lakenheath confirms that four killed were airmen

Pave Hawk Helicopters
The airmen were in a Pave Hawk helicopter Credit: RAF Lakenheath

Suffolk’s RAF Lakenheath has confirmed that four people killed in a helicopter crash in North Norfolk last night were airmen.

Their US Air Force Pave Hawk helicopter came down on marshland at Cley at about 7pm.

The next of kin are being informed. RAF Lakenheath says the four airmen will be officially named in due course.

The US military is working with the police and the MOD on the recovery efforts. A 400 metre cordon has been set up for an investigation to begin this morning.

National

Eurocopter: Operator decided to ground helicopters

Eurocopter, which builds EC135 helicopters, said the decision to ground some of the aircraft fleet was taken by the operator Bond Air Services:

Eurocopter is in close contact with Bond to fully support theactivities.

Eurocopter does not recommend any further action for the other EC135 aircraftin service around the world.

EASA [the European Aviation Safety Agency] has never issued an Airworthiness Directive(AD) to ground the EC135 fleet ever since its entry into service in 1996.

– Eurocopter statement

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'Contingency plans in place' after helicopter grounding

A spokesperson for the Department of Health said that patients should not be affected by the grounding of air ambulances:

We understand this isa precautionary measure and that contingency plans with other air ambulancesand ambulance services are in place to ensure patients are not affected.

– department of health spokesperson
National

Air ambulance suspension 'not result of Glasgow crash'

The partial suspension of the UK's air ambulance fleet is due to a discovery of a technical fault discovered on one, the Association of Air Ambulances said.

The grounding is as a result of a technical fault on one air ambulance aircraft with other Eurocopter EC135 in the UK and worldwide remaining operational at this time.

The suspension of operations is not as a result of the incident in Glasgow involving this type of aircraft on the 29th November, for which investigations continue.

Bond Air Services are continuing to investigate the technical fault that has resulted in the temporary suspension of services from the afternoon of the 11th December 2013.

The investigations include functional testing across each of the EC135 aircraft affected to gather more information and will ensure air ambulance operations are regularly updated.

– Association of Air Ambulances

Read: 16 air ambulance helicopters grounded across the UK

East Anglian Air Ambulance among helicopters grounded after "defect" discovery

The East Anglian Air Ambulance.
The East Anglian Air Ambulance. Credit: ITV News Anglia

The East Anglian Air Ambulance has been temporarily grounded over safety concerns.

The helicopter is the same model as the craft which crashed into a Glasgow pub earlier this month.

It's one of twenty-two Eurocopters taken out of service by operator Bond, who are investigating problems discovered with a similar helicopter.

Bond Air Services says it has temporarily grounded 38 EC135-model helicopters globally after discovering a "defect" in one of them.

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