By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Mar. 8 -- Statoil ASA has confirmed that the cause of a Jan. 19 gas leak on the Visund platform in the North Sea was a design fault on a knock-out drum.
The company's investigation proved that a metal plate on the flare tank's outlet to the knock-out drum collapsed, damaging the flare piping. A portion of the deformed plate came loose and created a hole about 50 cm in diameter in the pipe.
As a precaution, Statoil has changed similar knock-out drum systems on the Kvitebjørn and Heidrun platforms (OGJ Online, Feb. 13, 2006).
Repairs are under way at the Visund platform, after which production of roughly 35,000 b/d of oil and about 5 million cu m of export gas will resume.