Oil major Shell has reported that one of its Gulf of Mexico platforms has been damaged in Hurricane Ida and 80 per cent of the company’s operated production in the Gulf is still offline.

Shell conducted an initial flyover of its assets in the path of Hurricane Ida. During this initial flight, Shell observed damage to its West Delta-143 (WD-143) offshore facilities, the company said on Thursday.

The company will send personnel offshore to provide a closer inspection of these facilities, when it is safe to do so, to understand the full extent of the damage and the degree to which the company’s production in the Gulf of Mexico will likely be impacted.

The WD-143 facilities serve as the transfer station for all production from Shell’s assets in the Mars corridor in the Mississippi Canyon area of the Gulf of Mexico to onshore crude terminals.

The Mars corridor consists of Shell-operated tension leg platforms Mars, Olympus, and Ursa.

Mars B Olympus platform - Shell
Mars B Olympus platform; Credit: Photographic Services, Shell International Limited.

Shell’s Perdido asset in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico was never disrupted by the hurricane, and the FPSO vessel Turritella, also known as Stones, is currently back online. All of Shell’s other offshore assets remain shut in and remain fully evacuated at this time. At the early phase of assessment and recovery, approximately 80 per cent of Shell-operated production in the Gulf of Mexico remains offline.

In the initial flyover, Shell did not observe any visible structural damage to the rest of its offshore assets.

“When we are able to safely deploy personnel offshore to these assets, we will conduct additional inspections and work to restore production as soon as possible”, Shell concluded.

Some of the oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico has been restored following Hurricane Ida but about 93.55 per cent of the current oil production and 91.29 per cent of the gas production in the Gulf of Mexico is still shut in, the latest report from the BSEE shows.

In related news, a Noble Corporation-owned drillship, which is under contract with Shell in the Gulf of Mexico, has also suffered damages as a result of the storm. The rig owner has now provided a force majeure notice to Shell and is working to bring the rig into port for repairs.

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