• Accident News For Roughnecks

    More Than 4,000 North Sea Oil Rig Jobs Cut Amid Covid-19 Crisis

    The North Sea’s workforce has fallen by 40% within two weeks as oil companies cut the size of their offshore oil rig teams to help stem the spread of the coronavirus.

    The number of workers operating the North Sea’s platforms typically stands at about 11,500. Photograph: Danny Lawson/PAMore than 4,000 rig contractors have been cut in the wake of the UK lockdown, during a difficult year for the oil industry after the collapse of global oil prices.

    The number of workers operating the North Sea’s oil and gas platforms typically stands at about 11,500, according to Oil and Gas UK, but the number of people operating the rigs has already fallen to 7,000.

    The UK oil company Cairn Energy became the latest North Sea oil producer to scale back spending plans. It told investors on Friday it planned to cut its budget for the year by almost a quarter to weather the oil price crisis.

    Cairn will shave $20m (£16m) from its North Sea spending plans to $45m, and will reduce its capital expenditure in Senegal by $70m to less than $330m. The company also plans to cut spending on exploring for new oil and gas reserves by a third, to $100m.


    One Person Dies As Crane Boom Collapses At Jack-Up Barge Off Qatar

    Jack-up barge said to be working on sub-contract from Saipem, the key contractor for Qatargas’ Barzan pipeline replacement project

    One person is believed to have died on board the jack-up barge Seafox Deema when one of the vessel’s cranes collapsed into the water off Qatar this weekOne person is believed to have died on board the jack-up barge Seafox Deema when one of the vessel’s cranes collapsed into the water off Qatar this week.

    Seafox Deema was working on a sub-contract from Saipem, the key engineering, procurement, construction and installation contractor for Qatargas’ Barzan pipeline replacement project, several people familiar with the incident told Upstream.

    One person said the crane operator working on the vessel died when the crane collapsed into the water, while it was lifting a pipe.

    “A crane from jack-up barge Deema was lifting some pipe spools from an offshore support vessel. The crane failed and toppled into the water with the boom and cabin,” he said.

    A diving operation followed, which later confirmed the fatality, as the crane operator was unresponsive, he added.

    One unconfirmed source claimed the deceased was a 34-year old Indian national.

    A second person said work on the Seafox Deema vessel has been stalled temporarily following the incident.

    One person is believed to have died on board the jack-up barge Seafox Deema when one of the vessel’s cranes collapsed into the water off Qatar this weekHowever, no damage has been reported on the topsides and subsea assets involving the Barzan project, he added.

    Upstream has sought responses from Seafox, Saipem and Qatargas on the incident.

    Seafox Deema is a three-legged, self-elevating jack-up unit for accommodation and offshore support services.

    It was converted to a self-elevating jack-up in 1990 by Lamprell in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, and was subsequently upgraded there in 1998.

    The vessel has a maximum person-on-board capacity of 470 and can operate in water depths up to 190 feet (58 metres), according to the company website.

    Seafox Deema has three cranes, with a maximum lift of 200 tonnes.

    One person is believed to have died on board the jack-up barge Seafox Deema when one of the vessel’s cranes collapsed into the water off Qatar this weekUpstream in 2018 had reported that Saipem was set to win a $1 billion-plus offshore pipeline contract from Qatargas, involving its much delayed Barzan gas project in Qatar's giant North Field.

    The Italian contractor landed the key Barzan project in 2018 and has been working on the pipeline project.

    The project’s workscope included the EPCI of more than 170 kilometres of offshore pipelines, plus an additional 80 kilometres of piggyback lines.

    The $10 billion-plus Barzan gas development is being carried out by RasGas (now merged with Qatargas) and US supermajor ExxonMobil.

    State-owned player Qatar Petroleum and ExxonMobil signed agreements confirming the Barzan project in 2011. The scheme involves a mix of offshore as well as onshore facilities.


    Halliburton to 'Significantly' Cut 2020 Capex Below 1.2 Dollar Billion Budget

    Oilfield services firm Halliburton is accelerating its cost-cutting and will significantly reduce spending this year below its original $1.2 billion budget, its finance chief said on Tuesday.

    Halliburton to cut capexThe Houston, Texas-based company did not disclose a new spending target, but is testing scenarios including a 60-65% reduction in some areas of the oilfield services sector, Chief Financial Officer Lance Loeffler told investors on a webcast. He pointed to a reduction to $800 million done during the last downturn that began in late 2014 as a potential target.

    Crude oil prices have more than halved since the start of the year as the spread of coronavirus slashes demand, and after Russia and Saudi Arabia launched an unanticipated price war. On Tuesday, U.S. crude futures were trading at $23.72 a barrel. 

    "The industry is facing an unprecedented dual impact on demand and supply side that none of us have witnessed over our professional lifetimes," Loeffler told investors.


    Schlumberger cuts spending 30%, eyes rapid slowdown in oilfield activity

    Schlumberger , the world’s largest oilfield services company, on Tuesday said it would cut spending by 30% this year from last year’s levels as the oil market has been roiled by the coronavirus outbreak and Saudi-Russia price war.

    Schlumberger expects slow downThe company expects a rapid reduction in active drilling and hydraulic fracturing activity, estimating the number of rigs in operation could fall to levels last seen during the 2016 downturn.

    Oil prices have fallen by more than half this year, diving below $24 a barrel on Tuesday, as coronavirus curtails demand and top suppliers Saudi Arabia and Russia began pumping full bore to grab share in a slumping market.

    The twin supply and demand shocks have driven major oil companies to slash spending by up to 50% this year and pushed oilfield services providers for price cuts. Rival Halliburton plans to furlough about 3,500 workers in response to the producer spending cuts and coronavirus outbreak.


    Part of ‘The Beast,’ ConocoPhillips’ massive drilling rig, slides off Alaska North Slope road

    Update, 2:30 p.m. Friday: The rig was back on the road Thursday evening, according to Doyon.

    A file photo of Doyon Drilling Rig 26, dubbed Original story: A modular section of ConocoPhillips’ huge oil drilling rig, “The Beast,” slid partly off a main gravel road west of Prudhoe Bay on Wednesday.

    The mishap delayed the uniquely gigantic rig’s inaugural trip to the oil fields, but caused no injuries or spills.

    The module for Doyon 26, as the rig is formally known, went off a road in the oil company’s Kuparuk field, according to a statement from Natalie Lowman, a ConocoPhillips spokeswoman.

    “The module is partly off the road,” Lowman said Thursday morning. “Emergency response personnel and operations are formulating a recovery plan to safely return the drill rig module to the road.”

    Thursday evening, Lowman said the rig was expected to be back on the road that night.


    Apache Laying Off 85 Workers In Midland Texas

    Apache Corp. is laying off 85 employees in Midland in response to the oil crash.

    Apache is laying off 85 employees in Midland in response to the oil crashThe Houston oil and gas producer told state workforce officials on Thursday that its layoffs began Wednesday and will continue through May 18. The affected employees work at Apache’s facility at 303 Veterans Airpark Lane.

    The move comes after Apache cut $650 million, or about a third, from its capital budget used to fund oil exploration and production. The company also cut its quarterly dividend by 90 percent to 2.5 cents per share, down from 25 cents.

    “We are significantly reducing our planned rig count and well completions for the remainder of the year, and our capital spending plan will remain flexible based on market conditions,” Apache Chief Executive John Christmann IV said in a statement last week.

    U.S. oil and gas producers are slashing spending on new wells, furloughing and laying off workers after oil prices collapsed Wednesday into the $20 range. Apache and eight other of the most prolific shale drillers in the Permian Basin have cut $9.2 billion from their planned capital budget for this year, portending a sharp decline in drilling activity and layoffs.


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