The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement ( BOEMRE) has completed its investigation into the fire that broke out on an offshore oil platform 100 miles off the Louisiana coast in September of 2010. The fire forced the 13 platform workers to jump in to the water and await Coast Guard rescue. The fire aboard the Mariner Energy Vermillion 380-A platform occurred just months after the April 2010 BP oil spill, offering a chilling reminder of the importance of strict safety standards in the offshore oil industry. The official investigation report cites a combination of factors, including crucial equipment failure, corroded equipment, and a fire water pump that could not be used due to generator failure, as causes for the incident.
“The report underscores the need for offshore operators to maintain their equipment consistent with existing standards, to protect the safety of personnel working onboard and to protect the environment,” BOEMRE Director Michael Bromwich stated.
According to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, noncompliance citations may be issued to Mariner Energy Inc. Mariner Energy, which has recently been taken over by Apache Corporation, may also face civil charges related to the September fire.