Trinidad, Venezuela Check Oil Installations After Quake

CARACAS Sep 29, 2006 (Dow Jones Newswires)

Venezuela and Trinidad haven't immediately reported any damage following a strong earthquake Friday morning in northern Trinidad.

But officials from both countries said they were still checking oil and natural gas installations Friday morning to confirm that operations are running smoothly.

The earthquake, which registered a 6.0 magnitude, rattled both countries. A spokesman at state firm Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. said the company is still checking the status of offshore natural gas platforms near Trinidad, and will have reports on operations later Friday.

"There have been no damage reports yet," said the spokesman.

The head of Venezuela's seismological institute, Gustavo Malave, said Friday morning there were no injuries or damage reported.

A source at Trinidad's Petrotrin state oil firm said there was no damage immediately reported Friday morning, but the company would be checking installations throughout the day.

Chevron Corp. (CVX) and Statoil (STO) have offshore natural gas operations in eastern Venezuela, but neither company was immediately available for comment.

The 9:08 a.m. (1308 GMT) tremor swayed buildings in the Trinidadian capital, Port-of-Spain, and some schools were evacuated.

The earthquake was centered 41 kilometers (26 miles) northwest of the capital in the Caribbean.

Copyright (c) 2006 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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