Mexico City — A fire on the sea surface west of the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, was extinguished early on Friday, said state-owned oil company Pemex, accusing gas leaks from underwater pipelines of causing flames. Captured in a viral video.
The bright orange flames that pop out of the lava-like water were called “fire eyes” on social media because of the flaming circle of flames that raged a short distance from Pemex’s oil platform.
According to Pemex, the fire took more than five hours to completely extinguish.
The fire began in an underwater pipeline connecting to Pemex’s flagship Ku Malob Zap oil development platform, four sources told Reuters.
Ku Maloob Zaap is just above the southern edge of the Gulf of Mexico.
Pemex said no injuries were reported and the project’s production was unaffected after a gas leak at around 5:15 am local time.Completely disappeared by 10:30 am
The company added that it would investigate the cause of the fire.
Pemex, which has a long record of major occupational accidents at the facility, added that it also closed valves in its 12-inch diameter pipeline.
Angel Carrizales, head of the Mexican oil safety regulator ASEA, wrote on Twitter that the incident “did not cause a spill.” He didn’t explain what was burning on the surface of the water.
Ku Maloob Zaap is Pemex’s largest oil producer, accounting for more than 40% of the approximately 1.7 million barrels per day.
“The turbomachinery at Ku Malob Zap’s active production facility was affected by thunderstorms and heavy rains,” according to a Pemex incident report shared by one Reuters source.
The report added that company workers used nitrogen to control the fire.
The details of the incident report were not included in Pemex’s brief press statement, and the company did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
By Adriana Barrera and Marianna Parraga