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Southwark field jack-up rig develops leg problems

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Oilfield Technology,

IOG has said that an issue has been identified on one of the legs of the Noble Hans Deul jack-up drilling rig mobilised to the Southwark field in the UK North Sea.

The issue was identified on 10 October and the installation process was halted. No drilling or associated works were ongoing at the time. The rig went to full muster while the issue was assessed and all 66 people on board are safe and well. There was no damage to the rig hull or to the Southwark platform.

The rig is stable and connected to tow boats while the crew assesses its condition. Noble Corp., the rig owner, has initiated an investigation into the cause of the issue. It is initially expected that the rig will be transported to port to undertake any necessary assessments before drilling can be safely resumed.

The company continues to expect first gas from both the Blythe and Elgood fields in 4Q21 once the final subsea and onshore installations are complete.

Andrew Hockey, CEO of IOG, commented: "Needless to say, we will be taking all necessary actions to minimise the interruption to safe and efficient development drilling at Southwark caused by this unexpected issue identified by the Noble Hans Deul rig during jacking operations. Most importantly, there has been no harm to any personnel or any IOG assets. In the meantime, this has no bearing on the timing of Phase 1 First Gas from the Blythe and Elgood fields which remains on schedule to occur during Q4 2021."

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