Kulluk: After Safe Anchor, Inspections Inside and Out
No word on price tag of 11-day recovery
ANCHORAGE - Shell's drilling rig, the Kulluk, is being assessed after dropping anchor in Kiliuda Bay on Kodiak Island Monday. The question many are asking is, who's going to pick up the tab for the large emergency operation?
But before that can be determined, Shell has to figure out how much damage was actually done.
Shell said inspections are under way to determine the status of the vessel, both inside and out. And state Department of Environmental Conservation officials said they are monitoring environmental conditions at the site of the Kulluk's grounding and along it's transit path to the harbor.
The operation’s unified command said today there are no signs of leaking fuel or other contaminants from the rig. Their beach assessments of the site where the rig went to ground are continuing and, at this time, there are no reports of environmental impact.
Lifeboats and other debris jettisoned from the Kulluk are being collected from shorelines near the impact site and along its transit route to the harbor.
Tonight remotely-operated vehicles will be put in the water to get an look at the hull. Divers will be deployed if necessary.
Seawater knocked out primary and emergency generators on the vessel last week. Curtis Smith with Shell’s External Affairs said today that the oil company wants to know if anything else below decks has also been damaged.
“We have time, we're in safe harbor, nobody ever benefited from rushing, so we're going to look at the outside of the hull, the inside, to better understand what happened when the seawater compromised some breached doors and openings, and we'll know more after that.”
Neither Shell, state agencies, nor the Coast Guard would venture a guess as to the total cost of the operation, which began on December 28.
State DEC on-site commander Steven Russell said that, with hundreds of people on shift 24 hours a day, the costs from the operation will be significant, and they plan to get their money back.
While it’s too early to say just how much the final operation will cost, Smith did say that “this is a Shell incident” and said the company would “fulfill all financial obligations" to those involved.