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The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) issued a press statement revealing that the oil rig that capsized in Ovhor, Warri, Delta State, had been operating without proper approvals since 2016.

The rig, owned by Depthwize Nigeria Limited, operated on Nigerian waters without complying with NIMASA regulations.

The agency promptly dispatched a team, including Search and Rescue and marine accident investigation officers, to the incident site in line with its commitment to ensuring safe shipping and cleaner oceans.

Initial investigations confirmed that the ill-fated rig, flagged under Panama, had been operating without requisite approvals from NIMASA.

The rig, an ABS Classed inland Water Drilling Barge, collapsed while being towed to Seplat Oil field in Delta State, resulting in one fatality and three missing personnel.

NIMASA has engaged with Clean Nigerian Associate and Seplat Energy Limited to assess spillage levels and gather further information, as required by the Merchant Shipping Act 2007.

Seplat Energy, operator of the SEPLAT/NNPCL joint venture, expressed regret over the incident and reported that 92 out of 96 crew members were safe. The company pledged to conduct a thorough investigation into the cause of the collapse.

NIMASA reiterated its commitment to safe shipping and cleaner oceans by deploying search, rescue, and investigation teams to the collapse site.

This tragic occurrence serves as a poignant reminder of the critical role played by NIMASA in ensuring maritime safety. The agency’s deployment of search, rescue, and investigation teams to the collapse site underscores its swift response. However, it also underscores the necessity for continuous safety monitoring and vigilance to prevent similar incidents in the future. Stricter adherence to safety regulations and robust monitoring mechanisms are essential to prevent unauthorized operations and mitigate risks within N

igerian waters.



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