The U.S. Coast Guard is investigating what caused an offshore supply vessel (OSV) to strike an oil platform and sink in the Gulf of Mexico off Louisiana. A nearby supply ship rescued the 23 people on the damaged OSV before it went down.
The 96-foot Celeste Ann struck the West Delta 73 D platform, located 15 miles west of Southwest Pass near the mouth of the Mississippi River in Plaquemines Parish, at about 0915 on June 14, the Coast Guard reported. The vessel, owned by B&J Martin Inc. of Galliano, La., was bound from Cut Off, La., to the platform with four crewmembers and 19 offshore workers aboard.
Petty Officer Carlos Vega, spokesman for the Coast Guard’s Eighth District, said Celeste Ann struck the platform amidships on the vessel’s starboard side just below the chine. Seas were about 3 feet in the area at the time of the incident, with winds of 14 to 18 knots, according to buoy data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The 150-foot Odyssea Endeavor responded and took Celeste Ann’s passengers and crew aboard uninjured, Vega said. Celeste Ann then sank in about 180 feet of water. Nobody was injured on the platform and the structure was not damaged.
Lt. j.g. Tessa Clayton of Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans said an HH-65C helicopter was dispatched to the scene and reported a sheen, measuring one-half mile by 150 feet, from a small amount of fuel aboard the vessel. A boom was deployed by B&J Martin to contain the spill, Clayton said.
Vega said B&J Martin hired Resolve Marine Group to salvage the vessel, which was taken to a scrap yard. Calls to B&J Martin for comment about the incident and salvage were not returned.