A helicopter returning from an offshore installation with 13 people on board has crashed near the Norwegian city of Bergen.
Statoil, which has an emergency response organisation said it has mobilised its resources with regard to the incident.
According to Bloomberg, the helicopter had been coming back from the Gullfaks B platform when the incident happened.
A spokesman for Statoil said: “Today, April 29, at 12.20 pm Statoil received notification of a helicopter accident on the Norwegian continental shelf. Statoil has mobilized its emergency response organization.”
A spokeswoman for CHC said:”CHC Helicopter can confirm that there has been an incident involving one of our aircraft in the Norwegian sector.
“Exact details of the incident, which happened at approximately 11am BST, are not yet known.
“The appropriate authorities have been informed and the company’s Incident Management Team is being mobilised.
“Further details will be released when more information becomes available.”
Norwegian coastguard told Energy Voice 11 passengers and two crew are on board. Coastguard has not confirmed the condition of those on board, but said the helicopter was “in many pieces”
The helicopter came down on a sector of the Norwegian coast, 23km from the heliport at Nygardstangen.
Police spokesman Morten Kronen said the helicopter “has crashed, it is totally smashed”.
He added that there were “reports of an explosion and thick smoke” and that there were people in the sea.
Mr Kronen said the crash took place on the island of Turoey, near Bergen, and did not explain why people had ended up in the water.
Eyewitness Rebecca Andersen told Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang that the helicopter’s “rotor blades came rushing toward us”.
“Then we heard a violent explosion,” Ms Andersen was quoted as saying.
The area is frequently used by helicopter traffic servicing offshore oil platforms in the North Sea off the Norwegian coast.
According to reports in Norwegian media, one witness described hearing a “loud bang” then a “strange sound”.
She said: “They say it just fell straight down. They said it was a large helicopter.”
More to follow.