Thursday, September 2, 2010

Oil Rig Explodes Off the Coast of Louisiana

Oil rig explodes near the site of the failed Macondo well off the coast of Louisiana

By Nicholas Moroni

The Associated Press reported a short time ago today that an offshore petroleum platform exploded 80 miles off the coast of Vermillion Bay - not far from the site of the failed Macondo well, which leaked into the gulf's waters for three months.

Information at this point is limited. Residents in and around Vermillion Parish claim that little can be seen at this time.

"We think it's a production platform," said a representative from the Vermillion Parish Tourist Commission, reinforcing the AP report. The representative asked to be quoted anonymously.

"We don't see any smoke trails. All I know is what I've seen on the news," said Steve Chevalier, a hotel owner in nearby Grand Isle.

AP, reporting on a Coast Guard briefing, stated that Coast Guard Petty Officer Casey Ranel said the blast was reported by private helicopter company this morning.

The exploded rig was in roughly 350 feet of water, according to the Department of Homeland Security; while the Deepwater Horizon was submerged 5,000 feet at the time when it burst into flames.

All 13 workers aboard the rig have been accounted for, with only 1 injury, The Times-Picayune reported.

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