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July 24th, 2013

Fire Breaks Out On Drilling Rig After Workers Evacuated

A fire broke out late Tuesday on an out-of-control natural gas well  off the Louisiana coast just hours after 44 workers were safely evacuated from a nearby jackup rig. No injuries were reported from the fire, a spokeswoman for the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement said.

The cause of the fire, about 55 miles off the Lousiana coast, wasn’t yet clear. It wasn’t known how or when the blaze would be extinguished. The blowout, which occurred mid-morning Tuesday, was near an unmanned offshore gas platform that was not currently producing.

The workers who were evacuated where on a portable drilling rig, also called a jackup rig, owned by Hercules Offshore Inc. The company is a contractor for Walter Oil & Gas Corp., an exploration and production company.

Officials stressed that the blowout would not be as devastating as the BP oil spill of 2010, the worst offshore environmental disaster in the nation’s history.

Nautical traffic was being kept out of an area about 500 meters around the site, and aircraft up to 2,000 feet above the site was restricted.

The Houston offshore injury lawyers at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers help workers who have been hurt while working on drilling rigs.

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