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Call for overhaul of FAI system to spare families years of distress

Planned legislation will not speed up inquiries where a criminal investigation is also under way.

Super Puma: Helicopter similar to this one crashed.
© STV

Victims' families and lawyers say an overhaul of the Fatal Accident Inquiry system in Scotland must end delays which can cause years of distress before evidence is heard.

The Scottish Government has confirmed planned legislation will not speed up the time taken to hold an inquiry if a criminal investigation has also been launched.

In March a Fatal Accident Inquiry into the deaths of 16 men who died when their offshore helicopter crashed in the North Sea in 2009 concluded the crash could have been prevented.

Sheriff principal Derek Pyle who presided over the Inquiry said the length of time the families had to wait for the outcome was unacceptable.

The Scottish Government has admitted a planned shake up of the system will not speed up the time take to hold an inquiry if a criminal investigation has also been launched.

Many families claim the current process can leave them in an "emotional limbo" and only by speeding up the timescale can they begin to get the answers they strive for into their loved ones deaths.

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