NEW ORLEANS (WAFB) - The U.S. Coast Guard is currently searching for a worker who reportedly fell off an oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico. The incident happened about 75 miles off Vermilion Bay on Wednesday, May 29. Coast Guard Sector New Orleans watchstanders were notified around 6:30 a.m. by workers at the Eugene Island 331 platform that a 54-year-old man from Renaissance Offshore’s Eugene Island 331 platform somehow ended up in the water. It's not clear how the man ended up in the water. The cause of the incident is under investigation, the agency said.
Renaissance Offshore spokesman Jay Morakis said the company is actively engaging in the search but doesn't have additional information to report "beyond that a worker has been confirmed missing and that the Coast Guard has commenced a search to find him."
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and we ask that you respect their privacy while the search is ongoing. We are actively working with the Coast Guard, and when we do have more information, we will share it when it is appropriate to do so," Morakis said in a statement to the Chronicle.
Renaissance Offshore is a Houston-based oil and gas producer focused on offshore drilling off Mexico and the U.S. Gulf Coast. The company was founded in December 2011, to buy and develop legacy oil fields in the Gulf of Mexico, according to Renaissance's website. Between 2012 and 2014 Renaissance grew substantially with the acquisition of sixteen Gulf of Mexico producing fields. Renaissance said it has 130 employees and contractors, including five contractors running the Eugene Island 331 platform involved in Wednesday's incident.
The following agencies or groups are involved in the search:
- Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans MH-65 Dolphin aircrew
- Coast Guard Aviation Training Center Mobile HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircrew
- Coast Guard Cutter Mako boat crew
- Platform operators
The cause of the incident remains under investigation.