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French oil major Total SA (TOT, FP.FR) Friday reiterated it was ready to start "in the coming days" an operation to "kill" a gas leaking well on its North Sea Elgin platform as it has managed to move a support drilling rig close to the platform.
The semi-submersible drilling rig called "West Phoenix" moved within the exclusion zone around the platform that has been evacuated and powered down since March 25, and stands ready to position itself directly alongside the complex, Total said in a statement.
West Phoenix will be the main support vessel during the planned well intervention and will be used to pump heavy mud into the G4 well to try to stop the leak, the group said.
The group is also planning to drill two relief wells simultaneously to the top kill operation and the drilling of the first back-up relief well is still progressing according to plan, Total said.
During the week, and thanks to more favorable weather, the group has been able to fly specialized crew to the platform eight times, during which temporary pipes to carry and pump heavy mud into the leaking well were installed, it said.
- By Geraldine Amiel, Dow Jones Newswires; +33 1 40171767; firstname.lastname@example.org