BPZ Energy-chartered tanker catches fire, sinks off Peru

A Peruvian Navy tanker chartered by BPZ Energy Inc. of Houston caught fire and sank on Jan. 30.

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Jan. 31 -- A Peruvian Navy tanker chartered by BPZ Energy Inc. of Houston caught fire and sank on Jan. 30. The tanker, Supe, which was moored near the Corvina CX-11 platform in Corvina field off Peru, was being used for oil storage.

At the time of the accident, it held 1,300 bbl of oil, most of which is believed to have burned in the fire. The tanker had a capacity of 7,500 bbl.

"Initial assessments show that environmental issues have been adequately controlled," BPZ said. A full investigation is under way, the company said.

The Supe tanker sank about 1½ miles from the platform, which started production Nov. 1, 2007 (OGJ, Dec. 10, 2007, p. 22).

The tanker stored oil produced from the 21XD and 14D wells. Current production, 4,200 b/d of oil, and the testing operations on the 18XD well were temporarily suspended.

Initial reported indicated no damage to the platform, barges, drilling, and well-testing equipment. BPZ said damage appears to have been limited mostly to the tanker, which was moved farther away from the platform after catching fire.

Twelve Peruvian Navy sailors working aboard the tanker were injured and evacuated to area hospitals. Two sailors were treated and released while 10 sailors were evacuated to Lima via a Peruvian Navy's hospital plane.

More in Drilling & Production