An explosion aboard the floating production, storage and offloading vessel FPSO Cidade de São Mateus has left at least five dead. Four workers are still missing and two are in critical condition according to a statement by vessel operator, BW Offshore.
The incident occurred at 12:50 PM local time on 11 February and production was immediately shut-in. Petrobras says the output of the unit was around 2.2 million cubic feet per day of natural gas.
The fire has been contained and preliminary reports indicate the explosion was a result of a gas leak in one of the machinery spaces.
BW Offshore CEO Carl Arnet says: “This is a tragic day, and our primary focus now is on the crew and their families. We cannot rest until the last four of our men are found. We express our gratitude to Petrobras and the Brazillian authorities for the tireless efforts in this time and wish to thank our peers and partners for their support.”
FPSO Cidade de São Mateus is on charter to Petrobras and is operated by BW Offshore at the Camarupim Field offshore Brazil, a field that is producing primarily natural gas and condensate.
The produced gas is pipelined ashore where oil is processed and stored on board. The vessel is capable of processing 10 million cubic meters of gas and 35 thousand barrels of oil per day.