The rig West Hercules. Photo: Jørgen Bratland / Equinor

Equinor halts drilling after incident in Barents Sea

A package on a blowout preventer was unintentionally disconnected and work therefore had to be halted, Norway’s petroleum watchdog agency reports.
January 22, 2019

The incident happened last week at Gjøkåsen, a wildcat exploration drilling Equinor has in the eastern part of the Norwegian sector of the Barents Sea.

The well is located some 150 km north of mainland Norway, about 55 km from the maritime border to Russia.

Norwegian petroleum safety authority has launched an investigation and has informed the police about the incident. The watchdog says it will provide the police with technical support should this be requested. Equinor has not posted any public information about the incident.

Accordring to the petroleum watchdog, the incident happened during drilling with the rig “West Hercules”. The lower marine riser package on the blowout preventer was unintentionally disconnected and the work therefore had to be halted. No persons were injured and no environmental dischargers are reported.

The cause of the incident is unknown.

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