Varanus Island fire halts production

Apache Energy Ltd says yesterday's rupture and fire that affected the export gas pipelines from Varanus Island has stopped all production, including from the John Brookes field.

Offshore staff

HOUSTON -- Apache Energy Ltd says yesterday's rupture and fire that affected the export gas pipelines from Varanus Island has stopped all production, including from the John Brookes field.

John Brookes gas is processed through the East Spar joint venture (Santos 45%) processing facilities on Varanus Island. The John Brookes gas field has not been damaged, however all production from the field has been shut-in. Santos' equity production from the John Brookes field in 1Q 2008 was 1.36 MMboe.

Varanus Island is located approximately 116 km west of Dampier on Australia's Northwest Shelf.

Apache said this morning that the company safely evacuated 152 employees to Perth. A team of 15 people representing the emergency response team from Apache remained on site to monitor the incident and today will be joined by managing directory Tim Wall and engineers to inspect the damage to infrastructure an direct an investigation.

"I want to commend our personnel for their professionalism and hard work, and want to thank our stakeholders for cooperating with us throughout this process," Wall says. "We are aware that this incident will result in downtime for our customers and will work with other energy suppliers and the gas transmission operator to help minimize the impact of this incident."

06/04/2008

See related story:Apache reports pipeline rupture, fire off Australia

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