The CAA’s Chief Executive has said that helicopter movements in London have almost halved since 2007, despite suggestions to the contrary following a helicopter crash in London earlier this month.

It had been reported in the media that some residents and MPs in the local area expressed concerns about the levels of helicopter flights before the crash in Vauxhall on January 16. However, official figures show that traffic is down by 46 percent compared with 2007.

Andrew Haines – who was speaking after receiving an honorary degree from Kingston University – said:

“Contrary to some recent suggestions, the number of helicopter movements in Greater London has actually decreased in recent years – falling from 34,872 in 2007 to 18,937 in 2012.”

He added: “All helicopter operations in London are very strictly controlled, ensuring that aircraft operate safely and avoid built up areas as much as possible. In addition to these arrangements, there are strict safety requirements for tall structures that ensure they are equipped with warning lights to enhance their visibility to pilots at night.”

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