On December 18, 2011 at 5:45am Moscow time, MSPTS Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk received a distress signal from the Kolskaya (328' ILC) while en route from the western coast of Kamchatka in the Bay of Zyriansky to Sakhalin in the Okhotsk Sea. Storm conditions in the Okhotsk Sea caused the jackup to sink. The rig was contracted to Gazprom at the time of the accident.
The tug Naftogaz 55 and the icebreaker Magadan were on site to assist with rescue efforts. According to the Associated Press, out of the 67 crew onboard 14 have been rescued and 4 confirmed dead. The air search for the remaining 49 crew was called off just after sunset on Sunday. The Russian Emergencies Ministry said that two boats will continue the search throughout the night and the Mi-8 search helicopters will return in the morning with two additional ships. Rescue efforts were hampered by the severe storm conditions and freezing temperatures.
The Kolskaya jackup, managed by ArcticMorNefteGazRazvedka, was built at Rauma Repola in Finland and entered service in 1985. The BV Schiedam-designed unit was capable of working in water depths up to 328 feet.
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