Cyclone Tauktae hit Arabian Sea off the coast of Mumbai in the early hours of May 17, 2021 where ONGC's major production installations and drilling rigs are located. The wind speed rose to nearly150-180 Km/hr with 6 to 8 meters high waves.
Due to the severe cyclonic storm, unfortunate incidences have occurred involving three construction barges of M/s Afcons working on a project of ONGC in Western Offshore fields in the Arabian Sea and one drilling rig of ONGC deployed for exploration purpose.
ONGC is taking all possible measures in coordination with ODAG (Offshore Defence Advisory Group) and MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre) to ensure the safety of personnel and vessels. The status of these vessels and drilling rig are as follows:
- Barge 'Papaa-305': Due to combination of cyclone and high sea swell, the anchors of the barge had given away, and the vessel started drifting. For rescue operation, INS Kochi and INS Kolkata- two ships of Indian Navy and one Tug Boat of Afcons, one OSV (Offshore Supply vessel) of ONGC, Coast Guard vessel 'ICG Samarth' have also been pressed into service. These vessels have reached the location and have stared rescue operation. Three more ONGC OSVs and two MSVs (Multipurpose Support Vessel) have been mobilized.
- Barge 'Support Station-3': anchors of the barge gave away and it started drifting North-West. It is clear of all operational Installations of Mumbai High. The vessel is under control and there is no water ingress. Two ONGC OSVs are on their way to provide necessary help.
- Barge 'Gal Constructor' is drifting at Colaba Point with water ingress in engine room. Coast Guard vessel 'ICG Samrat' and Mumbai Port Trust vessel 'Water Lily' are at the location for rescue and support.
- ONGC Drill Ship 'Sagar Bhushan' deployed for exploration in western offshore, lost its anchors and started drifting north. Four ONGC charter hired vessels are at the location for rescue operations. Two ONGC MSVs are also on their way. 'ICGS Shoor' of Coast Guard has been diverted for rescue operations.
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