Ten oil platforms evacuated as Hurricane Michael enters Gulf of Mexico

U.S. Gulf of Mexico operators evacuated personnel from ten offshore platforms ahead of the impact of Hurricane Michael which entered the Gulf on Monday.

BP's Thunderhorse platform in the Gulf of Mexico (Image source: BP)
BP’s Thunder Horse platform in the Gulf of Mexico (Image source: BP)

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) on Monday said that apart from the ten platforms, five dynamically positioned drilling rigs have moved off location out of the storm’s path as a precaution.

“From operator reports, it is estimated that approximately 19.07 percent of the current oil production in the Gulf of Mexico has been shut-in. It is also estimated that approximately 11.09 percent of the natural gas production in the Gulf of Mexico has been shut-in,” the BSEE said on Monday.

Oil giant BP has said it is closely monitoring Hurricane Michael to ensure the safety of its personnel and operations in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico.

BP said on Monday: “With forecasts indicating that the storm will strengthen as it moves into the northern Gulf of Mexico, BP is in the process of evacuating personnel and has shut in production at BP’s four operated platforms, Atlantis, Mad Dog, Na Kika, and Thunder Horse. Rigs are also preparing for storm evasion as necessary. BP will continue to monitor offshore conditions to determine when conditions are safe to redeploy personnel and resume operations.”

Anadarko also evacuated personnel from some of its Gulf of Mexico platforms.

The company said: “We are carefully monitoring the weather conditions in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, and to ensure the safety of our people have removed all personnel and shut in production at our operated Horn Mountain and Marlin platforms. All other Anadarko operated and producing platforms remain on production as we continue to watch the potential path of Tropical Storm Michael.”

Image by the National Hurricane Center

According to reports, BHP Billiton and ExxonMobil have also shut production from some of its Gulf of Mexico platforms.

“After the hurricane has passed, facilities will be inspected. Once all standard checks have been completed, production from undamaged facilities will be brought back on-line immediately,” the BSEE said.

The National Hurricane Center has issued storm surge and hurricane warnings for the northeastern Gulf Coast.

Offshore Energy Today Staff