Transocean's Deepwater Nautilus Damaged During Hurricane Katrina
Transocean has begun the process of deploying personnel to its U.S. Gulf of Mexico-based fleet and damage assessment efforts are underway following Hurricane Katrina. The company noted that it is experiencing some disruption with crew changes stemming from the dislocation caused by the storm.
A preliminary inspection of the company's semisubmersible rig Deepwater Nautilus has revealed significant damage to the rig's mooring system and the loss of approximately 3,200 feet of marine riser and a portion of the unit's subsea well control system which remained suspended at the time the unit was evacuated. The rig, which was previously reported to have drifted off location, has been secured by an offshore service vessel approximately 80 miles from its moored position prior to the storm.
Because further inspection is necessary to determine the full extent of damage, the company is presently unable to assess the length of time required to complete repairs and return the Deepwater Nautilus to service.
Preliminary inspections of three other moored semisubmersibles, the Transocean Marianas, Transocean Amirante and Falcon 100, have at present revealed no damage, although the inspection process is still underway. Inspection of the semisubmersible rig C. (Kirk) Rhein, Jr., which is stacked in a Mobile, Alabama shipyard, has revealed no evidence of damage.
The company's six dynamically positioned Fifth-Generation Deepwater Floaters, which moved away from the storm's projected path, did not sustain damage and are in the process of returning to pre-storm locations to recommence operations.
Robert L. Long, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transocean Inc., stated "We are thankful to have received no reports at this hour of injuries or loss of life among our people, both on duty and off duty in the Gulf Coast. However, some of our employees who reside in and around the areas hardest hit by the storm have lost their homes and other property. Our thoughts and prayers for safety and comfort are directed to these individuals, their families and friends."
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