Explosion rips through gulf oil platform, injuring 4; 2 missing
VENICE, La. — An explosion and fire ripped through a Gulf oil platform Friday as workers used a cutting torch, sending at least four people to a hospital with critical burns and leaving two missing in waters off Louisiana.
Coast Guard Capt. Ed Cubanski said the well was not producing at the time and no oil was leaking. A small amount of oil spilled from the rig when workers using a torch cut into a 75-foot-long, 3-inch-wide line on the platform. Cubanski said a sheen one-half mile long and 200 yards wide was reported in the area.
“It's not going to be an uncontrolled discharge from everything we're getting right now,” Cubanski said.
The fire had since been extinguished, Coast Guard spokesman Drake Fore said. He said Coast Guard aircraft and boats were searching for two missing people. Nobody was believed killed in the fire, but Cubanski said 11 people were flown from the platform to area hospitals or for treatment on shore by emergency medical workers.
Taslin Alfonzo, spokeswoman for West Jefferson Medical Center in suburban New Orleans, said four injured workers were brought to the hospital in critical condition with second- and third-degree burns.
The production platform owned by Black Elk Energy is about 25 miles southeast of Grand Isle. The Coast Guard said 26 people were aboard the platform at the time of the explosion.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Buffet: Berkshire’s built to last
- Most young Republicans back legal marijuana
- Huge, ancient quasar could alter theories on black holes
- Perceived slights have some New Yorkers longing for Pennsylvania
- Florida fisherman’s high court win spurs call for legal reform
- Mo. gunman kills 7, self, in rampage
- Monarch butterflies find milkweed supply dwindles
- Congress approves 1-week funding measure for Homeland Security
- Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu rejects Jewish House Democrats’ invitation
- Suspects’ search of victims’ homes OK’d in Colorado
- HUD gave subsidies to thousands of ineligible public housing tenants