Aiteo Eastern Exploration and Production Company, AEEPCo, said it duly notified the National Oil Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), about the suspected explosion that occurred within the vicinity of Nembe Creek Well 7, behind Mile 1 Community in Bayelsa State, which is not too far from Nembe field logistics base (FLB).
The company said the clarification became necessary to correct some misleading media reports about the fire at its oil well in Nembe, Bayelsa State on March 1.
The explosion occurred along the Nembe Creek Trunk Line (NCTL), the
major crude oil pipeline traversing the Nembe area. Aiteo is the
operator of the NCTL as well as the Oil Mining Lease (OML) 29.
Further details on the incident from the affected area as well as
statements from Aiteo and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation
(NNPC) posited that it was not a pipeline explosion but a fire at a
nearby oil well. Also, Aiteo stated that there was no casualty from the incident.
Aiteo said it had contacted the relevant agencies, including NOSDRA on
the matter within 24 hours as stipulated by law, with a reference to a
document “AEEPCo/PRD/2019/05” and signed by its Chief Operating
Officer, Emmanuel Ukegbu reads:
“At the early hour of today 01/03/19, we received a report from the
Mile 1 Community of a suspected explosion at Nembe Creek Well-7,
following which, our Operation ER Team was triggered. Preliminary
investigation suspects a possible explosion that resulted into fire at
about 01.00 hours in the vicinity of Nembe Creek Well-7. By 01:30 hrs,
the fire has tapered down.
“It is important to note that prior to this fire incident, all
facilities were shut-in due to NCTL outage about 17.00 hrs on
28/02/19. We are continuing with investigations and further
information will be communicated.”
“Preliminary investigations confirm that there were no fatalities; human
incidents or damage to community property. All the wells and facilities in
the immediate vicinity have been inspected and secured. This incident did
not occur at or involve any part of the NCTL or other pipelines. It is
important to note that prior to this incident, all facilities have been
shut down since 28 of February 2019 due to NCTL outage.
“Accordingly, any account suggesting that this incident arose from or
affected any pipelines is wholly inaccurate and misleading. Full
investigations to determine the cause of the fire and, in particular,
to determine whether this may have been caused by third-party
infractions, remain ongoing. These investigations are being pursed
with the utmost urgency and are have been given the highest priority.
“We are continuing to work with all the relevant authorities to restore full
functionality to all the relevant installations and affected areas. In
the time being, we express our gratitude to all our stakeholders for
your continuing support and understanding whilst urging calm and
vigilance,” it said.