Breaking News: Oil rig explosion leaves one person missing and 7 people injured.
The explosion took place tonight, at 7:18 pm UTC, on a rig stationed on Lake Pontchartrain, just north of Kenner City. The blast was so intense homes as far away as Destrehan and Luling in Saint Charles Parish could feel and hear the explosion.
Video from Facebook user Roger Fernandez captured the aftermath of the explosion. In the video, Fernandez notes that the explosion is “still popping and flaming away,” and that he felt the explosion at his house from about two blocks away from where he was filming. – Reported by The New Orleans Advocate.
The following photo was uploaded onto Facebook by the City of Kenner government.
At this time authorities, believe cleaning chemicals may be the cause of the disaster. This took place North West of Treasure Chest Casino and about 5 miles West of Williams BLVD boat launch. The fire and smaller explosions are still taking place at this time.
This is still developing at this time. Stay tuned for updates.
[UPDATE]: Currently more than 6 organizations are responding to the scene. Including the Coast Guard, LA Wildlife and Fisheries, Kenner Police, Jefferson Parish Police, St. Charles Parish Police, St John Parish, and a few others.
The lake officials and Coastguard will both fulfill water quality test once the fire is under control.
[Update]: Five people who were injured are in critical condition and have been taken to University Medical Center. The other two have been taken to East Jefferson Gen. Hospital and reportedly stable.
The rig involved is reportedly run by Clovelly Oil – Lot 41 and was being used to transport oil. The oil is possibly contaminating the lake at this time. At this time, the one person missing has not been found as of yet. Search and rescue for the missing person is still underway.
[UPDATE] Fire department, Chief Tibbets, says the goal is to stop the oil flow and possibly let it burn off safely.