Holstein Spar

The Holstein oil and gas field lies 150 miles south of New Orleans, Louisiana. Located in Green Canyon block 645, it is operated by BP and Shell. The drilling rig, operated by Pride International, has a 4,338-ton drilling module; the first of the facility’s wells opened in 2005. Production capacity for the spar is 110,000 barrels of oil per day (fed into the Cesar oil pipeline) and 150 million cubic feet of gas, which are exported via the Mardis Gras transportation system.

In addition, the structure carries a payload of up to 47,000 tons. It has 105,000 tons of displacement. Fully assembled, it is 745 feet long and 150 feet in diameter and features a 430-foot truss. There are two modules, one with the process equipment and one with crew accommodations and three gas turbine generators.

Facility Incident Reports

In December 2005, a backfire in a generator during a drilling operation occurred, according to a Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement report. Control software allowed fuel to enter the system during an upset condition, causing the backfire to happen when fuel gas was switched to diesel. Exhaust damage was reported.

The bureau also reported an injury in August of that year, when a worker was involved in a slip/trip/fall while drilling. While assisting others, the person stumbled. His finger was caught between the equipment and deck flooring, lacerating his finger, which required five stitches. The worker returned to the job the next day with lifting restrictions.  

In March 2007, an Accident Investigation Report by the Minerals Management Service (U.S. Department of the Interior) revealed there was a mishap with a hose while another vessel was transferring calcium bromide to the rig. The hose ruptured, triggering a shutdown of the transfer operation. Deterioration or abrasion was the suspected cause, and the puncture occurred from the outside. No violations or injuries were reported in this incident.

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