Husky taking steps to resume SeaRose operations two months after oil spill

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — A Canadian oil and gas company says it’s working to reassure regulators that they can resume safe operations, two months after a massive oil spill at one of their offshore oil production sites.

Work at the site of Husky Energy’s SeaRose production vessel has been halted since an estimated 250,000 litres of oil spilled into the ocean on Nov. 16 at the White Rose oilfield, about 350 kilometres off the coast of St. John’s, N.L.

In a release on Friday, Husky says the company could begin flushing and leak testing of the central drill centre as early as this weekend, weather depending.

Husky says it’s working with the coast guard, the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board, and other bodies to finalize a plan to recover the platform’s flowline connector and plug the flowline.

The company submitted a preliminary report to the board in December, saying the initial release of oil occurred over 20 minutes when crews were troubleshooting a drop in flowline pressure, and a retest led to a second release lasting about 15 minutes.

The spill, considered the largest in Newfoundland and Labrador’s history, has renewed calls for the government to take a fresh look at how the province regulates the offshore industry.

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