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Another Oil Platform Fire in Gulf, All 13 Workers Accounted For (Update: Oil Sheen?)

1:09 PM, Sep 2, 2010 • By MARY KATHARINE HAM
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It's 80 miles south of Vermillion Bay in the Gulf Mexico. Early reports called it an explosion, but later reports call it a fire. Robert Gibbs announced at the White House press briefing that the Mariner Energy platform was "not in active production" and the depth of the water at the site is about 340 feet.

The Coast Guard reports that all 13 of the platforms workers are accounted for and one is injured.

Mariner tells CNN that, at this point, a fly-over seems to indicate there is no oil leakage:

Mariner Energy, owner of the production platform, said in a press release that no hydrocarbon spill has been reported after an initial flyover of the incident.

"Mariner has notified and is working with regulatory authorities in response to this incident," the statement said. "The cause is not known, and an investigation will be undertaken. During the last week of August 2010, production from this facility averaged approximately 9.2 million cubic feet of natural gas per day and 1,400 barrels of oil and condensate."

Bobby Jindal will hold a press conference on the incident at 1:30 p.m.

The Coast Guard is reporting an oil sheen near the site of the oil fire:

A mile-long oil sheen spread Thursday from an offshore petroleum platform burning in the Gulf of Mexico off Lousiana, west of the site of BP's massive spill. 

Coast Guard Petty Officer Bill Coklough said the sheen, about 100 feet wide, was spotted near the platform owned by Houston-basedMariner Energy Inc. 

He said Mariner had deployed three firefighting vessels to the site and one already was in place fighting the blaze. 

The good news is the water is so shallow compared to the Deepwater Horizon that correcting  a leak could presumabley be done with traditional methods. Jindal's statement on the incident seems to suggest oil flow has already been cut off:

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal said on Thursday afternoon that production from a burning oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico has been shut.

Jindal said operator Mariner Energy's (ME.N) senior officials told Louisiana officials the flow of oil from the sea floor had been stopped. The fire seen on the platform was from flammable material in storage on the platform.

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