James Fisher begins Gulf of Mexico platform salvage

Subsea excavation specialist James Fisher Subsea Excavation (JFSE), part of James Fisher & Sons, has begun the salvage of a platform in the Gulf of Mexico destroyed by Hurricane Ike.

JFSE said that the salvage job would be the company’s 80th decommissioning/salvage job in the Gulf of Mexico.

The platform was destroyed during Hurricane Ike in 2008. The region was often hit by hurricanes in the past decade, and the salvage operation itself has been delayed due to recent extreme weather caused by Hurricane Irma, Harvey, and Tropical Storm Nate.

For some background, at least 49 offshore oil platforms, all with production of less than 1,000 barrels a day, were destroyed by Hurricane Ike in September 2008. During that time, around 93 percent of the Gulf’s crude oil production was shut-in as well as 77.6 percent of its natural gas production.

JFSE added that it deployed its T4000 spread which will clear the platform jacket to provide access for rigging and removal before excavating around the rig’s legs to 18ft below the mud line to allow for the safe access of a diamond wire saw.

The T4000 has a small deck footprint, an output of 4,000 liters per second and can easily maneuver around subsea structures.

Steven Kaub, JFSE business development manager for the Americas, said: “There is an immediate impact felt by the energy industry of hurricane season. There are also ongoing challenges. This project shows what our clients continue to face many years after a storm wreaks its havoc and how we can ease the burden.”