Ocean is in flames in the Gulf of Mexico following a gas leak

Circle of flames erupts in the Gulf of Mexico after a gas leak causes an underwater pipeline to catch fire before ships rush to extinguish the blaze

  • Bright orange flames shot up into the sky about 150 yards from a Pemex oil drilling platform west of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula around dawn Friday
  • The blaze was dubbed an ‘eye of fire’ on social media due to its circular shape
  • Several boats were seen trying to suffocate the blaze with water  
  • Pemex later confirmed the fire had been put out and no injuries were reported
  • The blaze was caused by a gas leak from an underwater pipeline 

The ocean off Mexico’s Gulf Coast was up in flames Friday after a gas leak from an underwater pipeline sparked a fire on the surface of the water. 

Dramatic footage showed bright orange flames shooting up into the sky about 150 yards from a state-owned oil drilling platform west of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula around dawn Friday. 

The blaze was dubbed an ‘eye of fire’ on social media due to its circular shape, while several boats were seen rushing to suffocate the blaze.

Mexico’s state-owned oil company Petroleos Mexicanos, known as Pemex, later confirmed the fire had been put out, blaming a gas leak from an underwater pipeline. 

The ocean off Mexico ‘s Gulf Coast was up in flames Friday after a gas leak from an underwater pipeline sparked a fire on the surface of the water

Dramatic footage showed bright orange flames shooting up into the sky a short distance from a Pemex oil platform early Friday

Sources told Reuters the fire began in an underwater pipeline that connects to a platform at Pemex’s flagship Ku Maloob Zaap oil development site, located just up from the southern rim of the Gulf of Mexico.  

The gas leak ignited a fire 150 meters from the platform around 5:15am local time, forcing the company to shut the valves of the 12-inch-diameter pipeline. 

Pemex said it dispatched fire control boats to pump water over the flames while sources also said workers had used nitrogen to battle the blaze.

At least three boats were seen surrounding the circle of fire and dousing it in water in aerial footage of the incident.    

The blaze was extinguished and the gas leak brought under control about five hours later and normal operations restored, Pemex said.   

The oil company said the incident resulted in no injuries and that its production had not been affected due to the time of the leak.   

It said it would investigate the cause of the incident.  

A Pemex offshore platform produces oil from the Ku-Maloob-Zaap field in the Gulf of Mexico 65 miles northeast of Ciudad del Carmen, Mexico

Workers on an offshore rig producing oil from the Ku-Maloob-Zaap field. State oil company Pemex later confirmed the fire had been put out, blaming a gas leak from an underwater pipeline

Ku Maloob Zaap is Pemex’s biggest crude oil producer, accounting for more than 700,000 barrels or more than 40 percent of its nearly 1.7 million barrels of daily output. 

Pemex has a long history of major industrial accidents at its facilities. 

In April, a major fire broke out at its Lázaro Cárdenas refinery in Minatitlán near the Gulf of Mexico, leaving seven people injured.  

This came after 137 people were killed when a pipeline exploded in a village in Mexico in January 2019.  

The pipeline had been punctured and local residents were collecting fuel from the leak when it exploded.  

The blaze was dubbed an ‘eye of fire’ on social media due to its circular shape, while several boats were seen rushing to suffocate the blaze 

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