BSSE, USCG complete review of Cuba-bound offshore rig

A review by the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement and the US Coast Guard of a mobile offshore drilling unit bound for Cuban waters found the vessel generally complies with existing international and US standards, the two US agencies jointly announced.

BSEE and USCG said the review of the Scarabeo 9 was completed on Jan. 9 off Trinidad and Tobago at the invitation of its operator, Repsol YPF SA, which has agreed to abide by those standards. The agencies emphasized that they have no legal or regulatory authority, and their review did not confer any form of certification on endorsement under US or international law.

The agencies reviewed the vessel’s construction, drilling equipment, and safety systems including lifesaving and fire-fighting equipment, emergency generators, dynamic positioning systems, machinery spaces, and blowout preventer in anticipation of Scarabeo 9’s scheduled work off Cuba in the coming months.

They said in anticipation of increased oil and gas drilling in the Caribbean Basin and Gulf of Mexico, the US is participating in multilateral discussions with the Bahamas, Cuba, Jamaica, and Mexico on a broad range of issues including, drilling safety, ocean modeling, and oil spill preparedness and response that are providing valuable information on each country’s plans and capabilities that will improve bilateral and regional cooperation should a major pollution incident occur.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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