Oxy: Elk Hills Ops to Resume Within Days

Occidental Petroleum Corporation on Friday said that steps are being taken in collaboration with regulatory officials, including California's Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA), to resume production at its Elk Hills, California operation following a February 6 incident involving the rupture of natural gas gathering lines and a resulting fire.

Approximately one-half acre of the 75 square-mile oil and natural gas field was directly impacted. Apart from the affected gathering lines, no other production or processing facilities were damaged. Lines were inspected in October 2006 as part of the company's comprehensive mechanical integrity program.

The company is awaiting approval from Cal/OSHA of its plan to re-enter the area to repair the affected gathering lines. Preparations for the repairs are moving forward quickly, and the company plans to resume production within a few days.

At the time of the incident gross daily production from the field was averaging approximately 70,000 barrels of oil and natural gas liquids and 280 million cubic feet of natural gas. Occidental is the operator of the field and holds approximately a 78 percent interest.