Chiles Offshore LLC announced that the company executed a drilling contract for use of the Chiles Columbus, the first of its Explorer Class jackup drilling units currently under construction. These units are LeTourneau Enhanced/Super 116 cantilever jackups designed to operate in up to 375 feet of water with heavy drilling capability.
The contract with CNG Producing Company calls for the drilling of one well in 320 feet of water in the Main Pass Area of the U.S. Gulf of Mexico southwest of Mobile, Alabama, which is anticipated to take approximately 60 days. CNG Producing Company also has the option to use the Chiles Columbus to drill one or two additional wells in the same area. The Chiles Columbus will complete final outfitting and the extension of the legs from 477 feet to 511 feet, which is scheduled for delivery in late May 1999. Its sister rig, the Chiles Magellen, is scheduled to launch in the spring of 1999 and deliver in September 1999.