1 Dead in Fire at Offshore Oil Refinery Platform

Nine workers also suffered injuries in the blaze.

Kristen Kazarian, Managing Editor

April 8, 2024

2 Min Read
Fire at offshore oil platform kills one, injures more
The company has a history of fire incidents in the last few years.Michael Sugrue / Stone via Getty Images

At least one contractor was killed after a fire struck an offshore platform operated by Mexico's national oil company Pemex, the firm said in a statement on Sunday, adding that two others were in "grave" condition.

A total of nine workers suffered injuries in the blaze on Saturday afternoon at the company's Akal-B platform, located in the southern Gulf of Mexico, where most of Pemex oil output originates, Reuters reported.

Five of the nine were Pemex employees while the rest were contractors from local service providers Diavaz and COTER.

A day earlier, Pemex said only two of its employees had been injured, and that none of the injures were serious as the fire had been controlled in 16 minutes.

The Akal-B platform is part of Pemex's aging but still significant Cantarell complex of shallow water wells. The complex currently produces around 200,000 barrels per day of crude oil, but two decades ago was one of the world's top producing fields with over 2 million bpd of output.

Pemex infrastructure across Mexico has for years suffered frequent deadly accidents, which analysts often blame on poor maintenance and other operational deficiencies.

On July 7, 2023, a fire left two dead at the same field on a different platform: Nohoch-A platform in the Cantarell Field.

In February the same year, three fires in one day occurred at three Pemex facilities in February: one at a storage unit and one at a refinery in the Veracruz, and the third fire of the day in Deer Park, TX.

In November 2022, a gas pipeline run by Pemex exploded in Tabasco in September, causing a fire and leading to the evacuation of all workers at the Paredón Hydrocarbon Separation Station.

In another major explosion, a fire broke out at a Pemex oil platform in the Bay of Campeche in the southern Gulf of Mexico in August 2021. The fire, which occurred during maintenance, killed five workers and injured another six.

In its statement, Pemex did not detail how oil and gas production from the complex had been affected. It did note that the company continued to investigate the cause of the incident as well as actions needed in order to "reestablish" operations at its processing center.

About the Author(s)

Kristen Kazarian

Managing Editor

Kristen Kazarian has been a writer and editor for more than three decades. She has worked at several consumer magazines and B2B publications in the fields of food and beverage, packaging, processing, women's interest, local news, health and nutrition, fashion and beauty, automotive, and computers.

Sign up for the Powder & Bulk Solids Weekly newsletter.

You May Also Like