The Coast Guard confirmed that a W&T Offshore gas platform located in the Gulf of Mexico caught fire Wednesday morning, forcing three workers to evacuate.
Two of the workers suffered minor injuries as they evacuated the platform located in 120 feet of water about 29 miles south of Terrebonne Parrish, La.’s Dernieres Barrier Island Refuge.
W&T Offshore’s Janet Yang said the accident occurred on an oil-processing platform, not a drilling rig. Yang said she did not believe an active well was located at the site.
The fire was reported at 10:20 a.m. Five contracted response vessels sprayed water on the platform had it extinguished by 2 p.m.
W&T officials reported that an inspection cover on a heater-treater valve cover blew out, causing the fire. It also resulted in a hydrocarbon spill that caused a sheen 600 yards long by a half-mile wide to form. Workers were able to shut in the platform before evacuating, preventing additional pollution from entering the water.’ The sheen was still present, but reports indicated it was dissipating.