Workers Evacuating Rig in Norwegian Sea

Workers are being evacuated from the Floatel Superior rig in the southern Norwegian Sea following a serious stability incident amid bad weather, Norway's Petroleum Safety Authority reported Wednesday.

The PSA was notified about the incident at 4:15 a.m. Norwegian time with a report that an anchor had punctured one of the rig's ballast tanks. This led to the rig developing a list of three-to-four degrees.

Speaking to Rigzone Wednesday morning, a spokesperson for the PSA said: "The rig itself is stable but the situation is not… They are evacuating as we speak."

The PSA has established an emergency response center to help tackle the incident, and it said it is taking a very serious view of the incident. The center will supervise the operator's management of the situation.

"We are thinking about the acute situation," added the PSA spokesperson. "The weather conditions are bad, they need to evacuate over 300 people and they have lost their barrier, meaning that they are taking in water. But the rig itself is stable."

The Floatel Superior rig is a dynamically positioned semisubmersible unit that can accommodate up to 440 people when operating on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. The vessel is currently located alongside the Njord A installation that is operated by Statoil on the Halten Bank in the southern Norwegian Sea.
 

 

A former engineer, Jon is an award-winning editor who has covered the technology, engineering and energy sectors since the mid-1990s. Email Jon at jmainwaring@rigzone.com

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