American authorities say a Manx-registered helicopter piloted by a member of the House of Lords didn’t suffer mechanical failure before it crashed in America.
The chopper with the Manx registration M-BOAT belongs to billionaire Lord Irvine Laidlaw of Scotland, and came down in the sea off Maine on August 1.
A preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board says there were no mechanical problems reported before it plunged 400 feet into the water.
The pilot and four passengers are said by US authorities to have suffered only minor bruises during the incident.
The helicopter was flying to Lord Laidlaw’s luxury yacht, the Lady Christine, when the member of the House of Lords was forced to make an emergency landing on the aircraft’s flotation devices.
The impact shattered the craft’s windows and American coastguards intervened to make sure its fuel didn’t spill into the sea.
The incident is under investigation after the damaged helicopter was taken to a nearby harbour where Federal Aviation Administration officials will inspect it.
It’s the first accident involving a Manx-registered aircraft since the Island’s aircraft register was set up.