The leak occurred at the Odfjell Drilling semi-submersible drilling rig Deepsea Bergen, which recently drilled a wildcat and an exploration well in Mim prospect. According to local media, which later was confirmed by the local authorities and operator, about 25 tons of natural gas leaked on the Asgard field, but without causing any injuries. Following the accident, the production from the wells at the subsea template was shut down, while the rest of the Asgard field runs as normal. The Norwegian state-owned oil company Statoil and Petroleum Safety Authority initiated investigation for the root cause of the accident and circumstances, which lead to the gas leak.
According to Norwegian Petroleum Safety Authority stated that the incident occurred during the preparation for well operation with the Deepsea Bergen. According to them, the gas leaked from the seafloor manifold to the sea and it lasted for 20 minutes.
“The gas leak occurred during an ROV operation preparing for a well intervention. Production from the wells at the subsea template was shut down. Production from the rest of the Asgard field runs as normal”, said the spokesperson of Statoil, commenting the accident.
The Asgard offshore field is one of the largest developments offshore Norway, with 63 production and injection wells drilled through 19 subsea templates. Located on 124 nautical miles off Norway in the Halten Bank of the Norwegian Sea, the Asgard field is comprised of three geographical segments: the Midgard, Smorbukk and Smorbukk South discoveries. Statoil holds 34.57% share in the field, partnering with Petoro (35.69%), Eni Norge (14.82%), Total E&P Norge (7.68%) and ExxonMobil (7.24%).