Lifeboat Repairs Shut Down Statoil Oil Fields

Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Statoil said it aims to restart 200,000 barrels per day of offshore oil production early this week after lifeboat repairs, according to an AP report in the International Herald Tribune. The company was forced to shut down its Snorre A platform and the linked Vigdis platform on Oct. 13 because an industry study found defects in lifeboats essential to evacuating crew in a crisis. A Statoil spokesman said the lifeboats were being upgraded and repaired, and that the best case scenario had production restarting late on Tuesday (October 24). The spokesman also the company's 140,000 barrel per day Heidrun field resumed production on Friday, after it was shut down Wednesday due to bad weather. Snorre A and Heidrun both use the lifeboats that were found to be defective. However, the Norwegian Petroleum Safety Authority allowed Heidrun to keep running in good weather because it had alternate evacuation plans. With the platforms shut down, total production fell last week by about 12 percent for Norway, the world's third largest oil exporter.

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