Oil Rig Accidents

Oil Rig Explotions

Oil Rig Injuries

Anadarko Petroleum

Anadarko Petroleum is one of the largest oil and gas production and exploration companies across the world. It operates globally and has a large presence offshore of Texas and Louisiana. They operate in America and have many locations worldwide. They have been involved in exploration and production at many oil rigs and petroleum operations in the world.

About Anadarko

Anadarko Petroleum owns or partially owns and operates a number of oil platforms and hubs in the Gulf of Mexico. They have been among the leaders in the petroleum industry and have continued to do well, even when some other companies were struggling. They recently announced shareholder dividends.

The company was originally opened in 1959 and now has more than 5,000 employees worldwide. They have an annual profit of about $12 billion. They have headquarters in The Woodlands, Texas with international locations in many countries including New Zealand, Brazil, Algeria, Sierra Leone and Kenya among others.


Anadarko participates in operations at of a large number of facilities. Some of these include:

Gulf of Mexico – Oil rig platforms and spurs

  • Lucius
  • Heidelberg
  • Constitution
  • Marco Polo
  • Gunnison
  • Nansen
  • Boomvang
  • Holstein
  • Horn Mountain
  • Marlin

Additionally, they hold exploration interests in offshore Brazil locations of Campos and Espirito Santo basins. They also have two exploration wells in offshore New Zealand located in Canterbury and Deepwater Taranaki basins.  In addition to their offshore endeavors, they also have U.S. operations in Colorado, Utah, Texas, and Wyoming and Africa and South America.

Environmental Contamination

Oil spills occur with some regularity; however, they are usually minor. There was a major contamination that occurred with the Deepwater Horizon oil rig spill. The rig suffered a fire and explosion that resulted in 11 fatalities. The rig sank, and it was the largest oil spill ever recorded in the Gulf of Mexico. Many companies had a stake in Deepwater Horizon including Anadarko, which had a 25% stake.

Although Anadarko did not do anything that would make them responsible for the accident, the government requested a $1 billion payment, and they have already made a payment of $4 billion to BP as part of a settlement. In addition to the governmental action, the company is part of a class action lawsuit that is pending for victims of the Deepwater Horizon disaster. The lawsuit seeks $12.5 million.

Accidents and Legal Action

Anadarko has had various reports of accidents and injuries including these:

  • Diamond Ocean Blackhawk

In 2015 an incident was reported in which Anadarko was drilling in the Gulf of Mexico using the Diamond Ocean Blackhawk when synthetic based mud (SBM) was discharged into the water. Two separate incidents were noted, and the investigation found that they were the combined result of both human error and mechanical malfunction. No injuries were reported with these incidents.

  • Colorado Shutdown

In April 2017, a home explosion occurred near Anadarko operations. The company did not take responsibility for the accident but did shut down operations to more than 3,000 vertical wells similar to the one that was operated just 170 feet from the home that exploded. Two men were killed, and a woman and child were seriously injured because of the explosion.

  • Injured Worker

In 2013 a worker aboard a semi-submersible rig broke his ankle while attempting to assist with a lifting operation. The sub that was being lifted got stuck and shifted the rotor stand, pinning the worker’s ankle. He was evacuated to a hospital in Louisiana where it was determined he suffered a double fracture. An investigation found that there was a lack of supervision and a lack of employee training that contributed to the accident. The company failed to perform operations in a “safe and workmanlike manner.”

  • Belford Dolphin Injury

A worker aboard the Belford Dolphin, a drillship, filed a lawsuit against the company he worked for after an injury suffered in 2009.  Anadarko had subcontracted the company and took responsibility for the injury. Anadarko’s insurance company refused coverage, so Anadarko took legal action against them. The court determined that the insurance company should make the appropriate payment. This case highlights the complexity of some cases, especially when subcontractors are utilized.

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