UPDATE: Workers Return to Offshore Platforms After Hurricane Sally Evacuations

Personnel are returning to platforms in the Gulf of Mexico after Hurricane Sally was downgraded to a tropical depression late Wednesday, but the threat of another major hurricane remains as a tropical storm may form in the Gulf of Mexico today.


More workers were returning to production platforms in the US Gulf of Mexico (GOM) on Thursday, following the aftermath of Category 2 Hurricane Sally, while some shut-in natural gas production was coming back on line.

The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) said 70 production platforms (11% of 643 manned platforms) remain evacuated, down from 119 platforms on Wednesday.

There are no nondynamically positioned rigs evacuated, and all dynamically positioned rigs returned to working locations. All undamaged facilities will be brought on line after inspection.

Operators reported today that approximately 31% of oil production is shut in, an increase over the 27% shut in on Wednesday. Approximately 25% of natural gas production is shut-in, down from 27% on Wednesday.

Sally was downgraded to a tropical depression late Wednesday, after causing “historic and catastrophic flooding” in southern US states. Sally came less than a month after Hurricane Laura hit the Louisiana area in late August and impacted facilities in the region.

The threat of another major hurricane remains, as the National Hurricane Center said a tropical depression or storm could form in GOM today.

 TotalPercentage of GOM
Platforms Evacutated7011
Rigs Evacuated00
DP Rigs Moved-off06
 Total Shut-inPercentage of GOM Production
Oil, B/D Shut-in567,77031
Gas, MMCF/D Shut-in670.1525