Flooding Prompts Shutdown of ONGC's Hazira Complex

Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Limited (ONGC) reported that floods hit the company's Hazira Gas Processing Complex in northern India overnight, requiring an emergency shutdown.

The catchments area of the Tapi River had been experiencing heavy rains continuously for the past few days, causing the water level at Ukai Dam to increase to 340 feet. As a result, water from Ukai Dam was released on August 7, 2006. The water started coming into the Hazira Gas Processing Complex through a storm water channel, resulting in the plant being inundated by 4-5 feet of floodwaters and leading to the plant's closure at 1:53 local time on August 8, 2006. The boundary wall of the plant would ultimately give way, allowing the river water to flood the complex to around 10 feet.

The gas wells of the ONGC / Panna-Mukta and Tapti joint venture's Bassein field offshore platforms have since been closed. Some 40 MMSCMD of gas supply from the Hazira Plant have been suspended. GAIL has been kept informed since August 7, 2006, about the situation for necessary action to inform the consumers served by the HVJ gas pipeline.

A Navy helicopter with inflatable raft has since been mobilized from Mumbai for rescue operations.

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