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US Oil Rig Explosion Injures Workers
As many as 15 workers still missing and at least seven injured in fire at oil platform off Louisiana coast
At least 11 people are missing and seven injured after an explosion and fire at an oil drilling platform off the coast of Louisiana.
The explosion happened last night at the rig, which is 52 miles southeast of Venice, Louisiana, while 126 workers were aboard, said coast guard senior chief petty officer Mike O'Berry. The rig was still burning this morning.
O'Berry said there were conflicting reports coming from the area but that at least 11 and possibly as many as 15 were missing. Seven workers were airlifted to a naval air station near New Orleans, then taken to hospitals. He said two of the seven were taken to a burns unit.
O'Berry said many workers who escaped the rig were being brought to land on a workboat while authorities searched the Gulf of Mexico for any signs of lifeboats.
The rig was drilling but was not in production, according to Greg Panegos, spokesman for its owner, Transocean Ltd, in Houston. The rig was under contract to BP.