No death, casualty at Ukpokiti Oil Field explosion — NUPRC

Posted by News Express | 4 February 2022 | 446 times

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The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) on Thursday dismissed any report of casualty or fatality at the Ukpokiti oil field explosion OML 108 in Delta State.

A statement by the spokesman, Paul Osu, said “There has been no report of any casualties or fatalities and the Commission will take necessary measures to ensure that all safety and environmental measures in line with global best practices to safeguard lives and the environment are put in place.”

The regulatory agency noted that the explosion leading to a major fire on an evacuation vessel at Ukpokiti field (OML 108) was reported by its operations team on Wednesday.

The Commission in line with its statutory regulatory oversight of upstream petroleum operations in the Nigerian oil and gas industry said it has commenced investigations into the incident along with relevant stakeholders and will provide updates appropriately.

 It was gathered that three Seafarers working onboard the Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) facility may have lost their lives in the fire.

The facility belonging to Shebah Exploration and Production Company Limited (SEPCOL) exploded around midnight on Wednesday.

Though, management of the offshore facility, in a statement signed by the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Ikemefuna Okafor, said 10 crew members were working on board the vessel as at the time of the incident, but sources feared that the number of crew members could be higher.

Meanwhile, a combined team of rescuers from other multinational oil companies are still searching for the missing crewmen.

A ship Captain, who is also a maritime expert as well as a Pilot who do not wish to be named, said FPSO trinity spirit, was allegedly rejected for registration by Safety Department in 2017.

He said the facility was out of class as then though had a Liberian Registry Certificate and that the vessel was poorly maintained, noting that those who operate FPSO do not keep to safety regulations.

“It was an accident waiting to happen since 2017. It should not even have been allowed to stay or operate in Nigerian waters. This is another cross mark for us again as other International Maritime Organization (IMO) Member States are watching.

“The thickness of the smoke tells me it was operating. It must be having a lot of crude oil on board. Now the communities have to brace in for trouble – Marine Environment Disaster,” he added.

 (Daily Trust)

Source: News Express

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