Natural Gas Blowout Causes Blaze on Gulf of Mexico Rig
In the Gulf of Mexico, just off the coast of Louisiana, a fire erupted on a drilling rig which caused the state coast to be surrounded by a large cloud of gas this Tuesday. Reports state that around 10:50 p.m. local time, the natural gas platform Hercules 265 experienced the blaze, just 55 miles off of the shores of Louisiana. According to the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) spokesperson Eileen Angelico, at the time of the fire there were no personnel on board.
As of early Wednesday morning, investigators are still uncertain as to what the cause of the fire may be. Once the fire began, workers with the Wild Well Inc. were brought on sight to make an attempt at controlling the blaze Tuesday night, though once they were within 200 feet of the platform they deemed it was unsafe to get any closer. Around that same time, the BSEE reports a specialist boat was dispatched in order to fight the flames on board using both water and foam firefighting tactics. The BSEE inspectors report that a light sheen could be viewed on the water for over half a mile, though it was quickly dissolving as the fire continued to burn.
Hercules Offshore was operating the drilling rig, otherwise known as a jack up rig, and was contracted by the Houston-based Water Oil & Gas Corp to compete a sidetrack well. Sidetrack wells are used as a reentering method into the original well bore and are often used as a means of fixing current problems within the well bore. According to Ken Medlock, an energy expert from Rice University Bake Institute, though these tactics are not used all of the time, they are not uncommon either, and they are an effective way of resolving engineering problems that may be present in the existing well.
Fortunately there were no personnel present at the time of the fire on the rig, though there may still be concerns for the people off of the Louisiana coast regarding water and air contamination as a result of the fire on the platform. If you or a loved one are concerned with property contamination as a result of an offshore accident that occurred near your home, please do not hesitate in contacting a trusted maritime attorney at Arnold & Itkin LLP. Our firm is highly experienced in all matters of offshore litigation and we want to help you and your family seek just compensation for you suffering.
In the event that you or a loved one has been harmed in a maritime accident, our firm is also prepared to fight on your behalf in order to help you prove the negligence which led to your injury. After an injury, our team at Arnold & Itkin is prepared to fight for you. Please contact us today for a free and confidential case evaluation.