The country’s offshore oil operations has suffered a setback with reports that one of the rigs drilling for oil in the Tano Basin in the Western Region is sinking, necessitating the evacuation of all the workers.
According to a source close to the operators of the rig, some of the workers had to jump into the sea and swim to the deck of supply vessels near the rig to safety.
It said a section of the rig was detected to be leaking, causing it to be sinking and for which reason the operators called for emergency evacuation to save the situation or risk losing billions of dollars and the lives of the workers.
At the time of the evacuation, a total of 134 workers were on board.
The source said the operations were halted in the early hours of Wednesday.
The source said almost all the rig workers were successfully evacuated but 11 essential staff had been retained to take care of the facilities on board. There were no causalities.
According to the operators of the rig, Transocean, its engineers were working to ensure that the rig was repositioned and health and safety facilities audited before the workers were recalled.
The source said some of the workers had to jump into the sea, but luckily there was a supply vessel nearby which quickly took majority of them on board while they waited for choppers to fly them ashore.
The rig, Marina, was said to have drilled two wells for ENI, an oil company prospecting for oil in Ghana and was getting ready to move to another location to drill when the defect was detected.
But officials of Transocean, owners of the rig say there was no cause for alarm as safety measures would be put in place to enable the rig to work.
Source Graphic Ghana