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Gulf of Mexico producers evacuating, idling production ahead of hurricane


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Gulf of Mexico producers evacuating, idling production ahead of hurricane

Offshore oil and natural gas producers in the Gulf of Mexico are evacuating platforms and rigs and shutting in production in preparation for Hurricane Michael.

As of 1 p.m. CT on Oct. 8, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement estimated that about 324,190 barrels of oil per day and about 283.9 million cubic feet of gas per day was shut in as a result of the storm. The figures represent about 19% of daily oil production in the Gulf of Mexico and about 11% of daily gas output.

Based on data from offshore operator reports from eight companies, personnel have been evacuated from 10 production platforms, or about 1.5% of the 687 manned platforms in the Gulf of Mexico.

In addition, five dynamically positioned rigs have moved off location out of the storm's path as a precaution. This number represents almost 30% of the 17 rigs of this type operating in the Gulf.

As of 2 p.m. ET, the storm was near the western tip of Cuba and is forecast to move across the eastern Gulf of Mexico through Oct. 9 before reaching the Florida Panhandle by Oct. 10. Michael was recently upgraded to Category 1 status with winds of 75 miles per hour but is expected to reach major status with winds of 111 mph or greater by the time it makes landfall.