The Bristow pilot who recently performed a dangerous overwater emergency landing in Nigeria also happens to be the first-ever female Nigerian helicopter captain, according to Nigerian news sources. Capt. Abimbola Jayeola, who hails from Abeokuta, Ogun State, southwestern Nigeria, graduated from Bristow Academy in 2008, said Naijarchives. She later joined Bristow Group and was based in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, where she flies offshore transport missions using the Sikorsky S-76C.
“We are very proud of her,” an academy source told R&WI.
On Feb. 3, Abimbola successfully ditched a Sikorsky S-76C++ helicopter in the Atlantic Ocean after departing from an offshore platform. All nine passengers and both crewmembers were rescued alive.
Last August, a similar S-76C crash in Nigeria claimed the lives of two pilots and four of the 10 passengers on board. Nigerian authorities have issued a temporary suspension of Bristow’s S-76 fleet and are investigating the cause of the most-recent accident.