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Oil platform explodes on Lake Pontchartrain near Kenner

Oil platform explodes on Lake Pontchartrain near Kenner”

A Louisiana police department says an oil rig has exploded in Lake Pontchartrain in St. Charles Parish.

The explosion injured at least six people.

Brian McGregor said Sunday evening that rescue boats were being sent and officials with the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office were assisting, The Times-Picayune reported.

Coast Guard rescue crews were battling 4 foot to 5 foot (1.2-1.5 meter) waves on the lake and a helicopter joined the search at daybreak after an overnight effort failed to locate the worker, officials said at a briefing on Monday.

It's owned by Clovelly Oil Co. of New Orleans, which has been working the lake's oil field since the early 1970s, company spokesman Tim O'Leary said. And although nobody has yet died, police officials on scene say numerous injuries were serious.

Three workers remain in hospital for blast and burn treatment, some in critical condition, Mike Guillot, emergency medical services director at East Jefferson General Hospital, said during a news briefing on Monday.

It was also unclear but likely that oil was spilling into Lake Pontchartrain, said Chief Dave Tibbits of the East Bay Consolidated Fire Department. He said the department's current goal is to stop oil flow and, if needed, let it burn off safely.

The rig is on fire in Kenner, Louisiana in Jefferson Parish.

Social media users reported hearing a loud noise on Sunday evening that even rattled some homes.

Several witnesses told Eyewitness News they heard a big boom and their houses shook following the incident.

Flames could be seen from the area and the air smelled of burning rubber, according to the newspaper.

Jefferson Parish's water supply comes from the Mississippi River and no drinking water comes from Lake Pontchartrain, Yenni said.

The Coast Guard will be conducting a water quality evaluation, as will the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation.



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