Big Foot TLP in Storage, Investigation Continues into Tendon Failure

The Big Foot tension leg platform (TLP) currently is in storage at Kiewit Offshore Services’ Ingleside, Texas facility while Chevron Corp. continues its investigation into why nine of the TLP’s 16 tendons lost buoyancy.

The TLP arrived at the facility in early September, Chevron Corporation spokesperson Cameron Van Ast confirmed to Rigzone in an email statement.

Earlier this year, nine of the TLP’s tendons were damaged after losing buoyancy and sinking to the ocean floor. A project team is developing plans for the recovery and re-manufacturing of lost and damaged tendons and tendon buoyancy modules, the spokesperson said. The seven free-standing tendons and their corresponding tendon buoyancy modules were recovered in early July.

“As we complete the investigation and update our plan, we will be in a better position to provide an update on the timeline,” said Van Ast in a statement.

Big Foot is a dry-tree extended TLP with an onboard drilling rig and production capacity of 75,000 barrels per day (bpd) of oil and 25 million cubic feet per day of natural gas. In March, Chevron had towed the TLP to Walker Ridge Block 29, where it planned to install the TLP in about 5,200 feet of water and approximately 225 miles south of New Orleans.

Production was expected from Big Foot in 2016. Following the incident, however, Chevron now does not expect any Big Foot production in 2016 or 2017, a reduction from its original plan of 10,000 net bpd in 2016 and 22,000 net bpd in 2017, according to Chevron’s second quarter 2015 earnings call July 31 of this year.

Karen Boman has more than 10 years of experience covering the upstream oil and gas sector. Email Karen at


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