News

44 Evacuated in Gulf of Mexico Oil Rig Blowout: 5 Fast Facts You Need To Know

gulf of mexico oil spill 2013 hercules

The Hercules 265 drilling rig pictured is jacked-up over the smaller unmanned platform, as is typical during drilling operations. The cloud pictured is natural gas flowing from the well. (Courtesy of Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement)

A Hercules Offshore oil and gas drilling platform, being operated by Walter Oil and Gas off the coast of Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico, has reported a “blowout” event. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) and the US Coast Guard are responding the the scene.

Here’s what you need to know.


UPDATE – 12:30PM, July 24: Reports are now coming in that the burning oil rig has begun to collapse off the coast of Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico. WWLTV has reported that authorities are saying that beams supporting the derrick and rig floor have folded and collapsed.

UPDATE – 1:30AM, July 24: Reports are coming in of a fire breaking out on the evacuated oil rig. The Denver Post reports that federal officials have confirmed the fire. There were no immediate reports of injuries. A spokeswoman from BSEE has said that the natural gas leaking from the well ignited at 10:50 p.m. CDT. It is not immediately clear what caused the fire, and it is not currently known how authorities are planning on combating the blaze.


1. An Unmanned Hercules Oil & Gas Platform Has Lost Control Of Flow

Walter Oil & Gas’ Well A-3 on Hercules Platform #265, an unmanned platform at South Timbalier Block 220 lost control while doing completion work on the sidetrack well to prepare the well for production, BSEE told Heavy.com this afternoon. The Walter Oil & Gas Corporation reported the loss of well control this morning at around 9:50 a.m. BSEE told Heavy.com that the “well is flowing gas and no oil is being released.”


2. The Platform Is Near A State Park On The Louisiana Coast

oil spill, louisiana, Platform #265, grand isle state park

The platform is located 55 miles off the coast of Louisiana’s Grand Isle State Park, and approximately 60 to 72 miles south of New Orleans. The platform is standing in “154 feet of water,” according to BSEE.


3. 47 Workers Have Been Evacuated, With No Injuries

BSEE has told Heavy.com that 44 personnel were evacuated. The Coast Guard also informed Heavy.com that the crew evacuated the platform on two life boats and were quickly rescued by a nearby offshore supply vessel, Max Cheramie.


4. BSEE & US Coast Guard Have Responded

Coast Guard has deployed a cutter and two aircraft to the platform to assess the situation. The aircrafts include a helicopter (deployed from Coast Guard Air Station in New Orleans) and a fixed wing aircraft (deployed from the Coast Guard Aviation Training Center in Mobile Alabama). BSEE inspectors are currently observing the situations from a near-by platform. BSEE is closely monitoring Walter Oil & Gas’ mobilization of its response efforts to stop the flow of gas and secure the well.

WDSU.com has reported that the FDA has placed flight restrictions for the immediate area around the platform.

According to a BSEE spokeswoman, the U.S. Coast Guard is providing safety management oversight and have deployed the following resources: the 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter and crew Pompano, one MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans and one HC-144 Ocean Sentry from Coast Guard Aviation Training Center Mobile.

Read more at: http://heavy.com/news/2013/07/gulf-of-mexico-oil-spill-blowout-2013/


5. A ‘Major Cloud of Gas’ Surrounds The Platform

Media is reporting a ‘major cloud of gas’ surrounding the shallow oil and gas platform.

Earlier this afternoon BSEE told Heavy.com that an overflight of the scene has reported a light sheen one-half mile by 50 feet in area, which is dissipating almost immediately.


This is the second spill to take place in the Gulf of Mexico this month.

New Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill: 5 Fast Facts You Need To Know

A well in the Gulf of Mexico is leaking uncontrollably. Authorities are responding to the event located 74 miles southwest of Port Fourchon, Louisiana.

Click here to read more

UPDATE: Here’s the official press release from the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement:

New Orleans, LA- The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) and the U. S. Coast Guard have stood up a Command Center in their continued response to the loss of well control event 55 miles offshore Louisiana in 154 feet of water. Walter Oil and Gas Corporation experienced a loss of control of Well A-3 at approximately 8:45 a.m. on an unmanned platform at South Timbalier Block 220 while doing completion work on the sidetrack well to prepare the well for production. The operator reported the safe evacuation of 44 personnel, corrected from earlier reports of 47, from the Hercules 265 jack-up rig.
The well continues to flow natural gas. From a BSEE overflight earlier today, BSEE inspectors reported a cloud of natural gas above the rig and a light sheen on the water one-half mile by 50 feet in area that is quickly dissipating.
“BSEE’s efforts today are focused on bringing this loss of well control event to a safe resolution,” stated Lars Herbst, BSEE Gulf of Mexico Regional Director. “Offshore oil and gas operators need to re-affirm their aggressive approach to the safety of well operations in light of this event and other recent well control events.”
A firefighting vessel is expected to be on location this evening with both water and foam fire fighting abilities. The operator, Walter Oil and Gas Corporation, will be conducting a site assessment prior to beginning any work on the well. BSEE will be reviewing and approving all plans and procedures to stop the flow of gas and secure the well. The U.S. Coast Guard is providing safety management oversight and have deployed the following resources: the 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter and crew Pompano, one MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans and one HC-144 Ocean Sentry from Coast Guard Aviation Training Center Mobile.
BSEE will be conducting an investigation into the incident’s cause.

Win a $500 Amazon shopping spree

Join Heavy's daily email newsletter to enter to win a $500 Black Friday Shopping Spree on Amazon.
Read the sweepstakes rules here.

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

1 comment

  1. Acoustic Attenuation Spectroscope as Process Spectroscope for Drilling Mud

    With the new powerful Ultrasonic sensors from IBJ Technology (www.ibj-technology.com) powerful process-spectroscope can be built up. Beneficial is to use multiple devices to monitor the process of drilling in deepwater.

    The sound spectroscpe are very helpful in finding oil and gas in deeper formations. Particularly useful is use in pressurized drilling muds. The study of nonlinear vibrations in the sound and ultrasonic range is a very practical and high resolution methods to identify the flow of liquids or gases, preferably hydrocarbons in the well bore in real time during the drilling.
    The sound pressure is the function to ensure enough also in gas. All muds, regardless of whether oil based or water based lb/gal can be safely monitored with the highest densities of up to about 20 lb / gal on inflow.
    Furthermore, changes in the turbulence or the profile of the flow can be detected in the pipes immediately.

    Evaluation of sound velocity is so high resolution, even the smallest tributaries are recognized by gaseous or liquid hydrocarbons.
    Each process is customizable by the sampling rate and the FFT analysis.
    With multiple devices along the mud riser an expansion can be detected in a timely manner by gas.
    The Ultrasonic sensors developed by IBJ Technology robust designed for use in the deep sea. Universally, these sensors can be fitted in all types of marine riser or mud lines. The Drilling Mud Spectroscopes can be with all solutions to the early gas kick detection and combine with the inflow control devices.
    IBJ Technology offers its solutions to all interested parties to use.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 866 other followers