Oil Platform Fire Update

NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Coast Guard and a commercial rescue helicopter transported 13 people from a rig after a nearby oil platform caught fire, Thursday, approximately 90 miles south of Vermillion Bay at 9:19 a.m.

Watchstanders at the Eighth Coast Guard District command center received a call from a pilot aboard a Bristow helicopter, stating that 13 people were in the water wearing immersion suits.

The crew of the Crystal Clear, an offshore supply vessel, safely pulled 13 people from the water near the platform and transferred them to a nearby rig.

Seven Coast Guard MH-65C rescue helicopters and crews from Coast Guard Air Stations New Orleans and Houston arrived on scene at approximately 11:30 a.m., and a commercial rescue helicopter, the Cougar, arrived on scene as well. Three of the Coast Guard helicopters and the Cougar transported all 13 people ashore to the Terrebonne General Medical Center in Houma, La., where none were reported to have sustained serious injury.

Mariner Energy, the owner of the platform, deployed three firefighting vessels to the scene and extinguished the fire. Coast Guard vessels and aircraft on scene saw no evidence of sheen or leaks, and Mariner Energy reported that the platform had been shut in.

Responders remain vigilant for any evidence of oil on the water, and Coast Guard vessels and aircraft will continue surveillance of the area. The Coast Guard is scheduled to conduct additional searches of the area at first light, Friday, to search for any evidence of sheen.

The cause of the incident is under investigation.

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