18 survive UK Helicopter crash: Super Pumas can float

18 people aboard a helicopter that crashed off Scotland have survived due to a safety device that allowed the helicopter to float.

The Super Puma helicopter ditched about 120 miles (193kms) east of Aberdeen while approaching an offshore oil platform.

The helicopter managed to land in the water upright and stayed afloat due to a safety feature that deploys inflatable bags when a Super Puma lands on water.

Safety experts are referring to the crash as being similar to the Miracle on the Hudson crash last month, where a US Airways A320 crash landed on the Hudson River.

The Super Puma Helicopter, also known as the Eurocopter Super Puma is manufactured by French aerospace company Aérospatiale. First manufactured in 1978, the Super Puma has a remarkably strong safety record, with only three known incidents until todays crash. Of the past three incidents, only one included a loss of life, and the other two both involved ditching on water. The Super Puma is used as both a military and civilian helicopter. The helicopter that crashed today is owned by Bond Offshore Helicopters, a company specializing in transport to oil rigs in the North Sea.