BLACK SOCIAL HISTORY Capt. Abimbola jaiyeola, Nigeria’s 1st female helicopter captain who ‘saved’ 11 lives in Bristow crashCapt. Abimbola jaiyeola, Nigeria’s 1st female helicopter captain
Political Forum G50 : Capt. Abimbola jaiyeola, Nigeria’s 1st female helicopter captain who ‘saved’ 11 lives in Bristow crash
In December 2014, Capt. Abimbola jaiyeola became Nigeria’s first female helicopter captain. On Thursday, February 4, 2016, her quick and articulated decision-making helped to avert the death of 11 Nigerians and two crew members. Capt Abimbola Jayeola flew the 5B BJQ Bristow helicopter that was headed to Lagos from Port Harcourt but ended up landing into the Atlantic Ocean.
The chopper was carrying with 11 people — mostly ExxonMobil staff — and two crew members on board, requested a distress call shortly after 10am, and crashed into the Atlantic 20 minutes later. About 10 minutes later, MV-DIJAMA, a new vessel owned by local Nigerian company L.A.T.C Marine Ltd, was alerted on the accident.
It arrived at the crash scene around 11.50am and started rescue operation, with all the passengers already wearing their life jackets. MV-DIJAMA launched its Fast Rescue Boat immediately and started receiving the casualties from the chopper’s LifeRafts. The accident happened 70 nautical miles off Lagos. The crash was not entirely incident-free. Three survivors suffered “hypothermia” — a potentially dangerous drop in body temperature usually caused by prolonged exposure to cold temperatures, in this case the Atlantic Ocean. Another survivor had a swollen arm, while the fifth had swollen shoulder. But it has now been revealed that were it not for the captain, all the lives aboard would have perished.