Uche Usim, Abuja
In what may have become a national calamity, the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company Limited (NPDC), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), on Friday said it successfully extinguished a fire at Well 18T, Egbema West in OML 20.
A release by the NNPC Acting Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Samson Makoji, said the operation was executed with zero fatality.
The release stated that the fire, triggered by activities of vandals on October 7, 2019, occurred in a terrain that was submerged in water, thereby posing difficulties for firefighters.
“The resilience and professionalism of NPDC personnel and professional divers from indigenous contractors eventually paid off, as they were finally able to contain the inferno on October 23, 2019”, the statement explained.
Speaking on behalf of NPDC Managing Director, Mr. Mansur Sambo, the General Manager, Health, Safety and Environment Division, Engr. Chris Ugwu, said that the feat was accomplished in record time, despite the challenging environment, with also zero damage to facilities and at a minimal cost to the company.
NPDC helmsman declared that the full support of the NNPC Group Managing Director, Mallam Mele Kyari and the timely intervention of the NPDC ensured minimal impact on the environment, stressing that the localized nature of the incident and the condition of the immediate environment helped in mitigating the spread of the inferno.
The release stated that Mallam Kyari had commended the performance of the team over the incident, even as the company assured that it was committed to the safety of the Abacheke community and its environs and would continue to monitor the vicinity.
“Although the immediate environment of the affected well is currently stable, we will ensure that post operation exercise is carried out to ensure that the well-being of the environment and the host community is sustained,” Mr. Sambo assured.
The company informed that the production at well would be restored shortly.