Hercules Offshore files for voluntary bankruptcy

Hercules Offshore files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy to navigate weak crude oil market.Hercules said its net operating days in the United States declined by more than half year-on-year and the average day rate to lease a rig declined from $108,237 during second quarter 2014 to $92,538.

[July 27 2013 Hercules 265: fire out - natural gas leak, then fire]

The natural gas well blowout and fire earlier in the week that spread to a jackup, causing part it to collapse, has gone out. The chain of events began July 23 when Walter Oil & Gas’ A-3 natural gas well in South Timbalier 220, off the coast of Louisiana, suffered a gas leak, resulting in a blowout. That brought about the safe evacuation of 44 rig workers, James Noe, a vice-president with Hercules Offshore, owner of the rig, told Rigzone. The gas that continued to leak from the well ignited around 10:50 p.m. local time Tuesday and the fire spread to the rig, the Hercules 265 (250’ MC) jackup. Several hours later, the rig derrick collapsed and continued to burn, and Walter Oil & Gas began officials thought about drilling a relief well. Before the well owner had to make that decision, the natural flow of sand and sediment into the well bore plugged the well in a process known as “bridging over”. With the flow of natural gas cut off, the well fire soon burned out, and the fire on the rig was contained to the portion of the rig that had collapsed. That fire has since burned itself out, as well.  A portion of the Hercules 265 (250’ MC) jackup has collapsed after catching fire .

“Two firefighting vessels were in the area and re-located a safe distance from the fire. A third vessel equipped with fire-fighting capability and improved monitoring system is enroute and expected to arrive late morning. The 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter Pomano is standing by to assess the situation and enforce the security zone. The Coast Guard Cutter Cypress is enroute and will arrive at approximately noon,” the BSEE said in a press statement.There was no fire as of evening at the site, about 55 miles off the Louisiana coast in the Gulf of Mexico, but natural gas was spewing from the Hercules 265 drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Louisiana, Tuesday, July 23, 2013. No injuries were reported in the midmorning blowout.   The fire started around 10:50 p.m. Tuesday evening, when natural gas leaking from the A-3 natural gas well at South Timbalier Block 220 ignited off the coast of Louisiana. The fire then spread to the Hercules jackup.   Hercules 265 is a 250′ mat-supported cantilevered jackup unit.

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