MEXICO CITY – The Mexican state oil company said on Friday it had ruptured an undersea gas pipeline in the Gulf of Mexico, raising flames to the surface in the waters of the Gulf.
Petroleos Mexicanos said they sent firefighting boats to pump more water out of the flames.
Pemex, as the company is known, said no one was injured in the incident at the Ku-Maloob-Zaap offshore field.
The leak at dawn on Friday occurred about 150 meters from an oil rig. The company said it brought the gas leak under control about five hours later.
But the crash gave rise to the eerie sight of bubbling flame balls boiling beneath the surface of the Gulf of Mexico.
It was unclear how much environmental damage the gas leak and the oceanic fireball caused.
Miyoko Sakashita, director of the oceans program at the Center for Biological Diversity, wrote that “the frightening images of the Gulf of Mexico show the world that offshore drilling is dirty and dangerous.”
Sakashita added, “These horrific accidents will continue to hurt the Gulf if we do not end offshore drilling once and for all.”