A gas well in the Bass Strait oilfield, south of Melbourne, Australia, exploded into flames on Wednesday (May 19th).
Aerial view oil rig on fire
GTV fire fighting boats in attendance
Aerial views ditto (3 shots)
Initials OS/1603 PS/16.37
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Background: A gas well in the Bass Strait oilfield, south of Melbourne, Australia, exploded into flames on Wednesday (May 19th). Thirty-two men aboard an oil rig on the spot escaped uninjured by jumping into the sea. A spokesman for the owners, the Broken Hill Proprietary and Esso Australia, said the fire was started by a spark caused by a tool being dropped down the well. A special firefighting squad maintained by the owners went out to the rig in barges to put the flames out with chemicals.
SYNOPSIS: An oil rig on fire int the Bass Strait, off Melbourne Australia. A gas well below burst into flames after a tool had been dropped into it, and caused a spark. A special fire fighting squad maintained by the owners, Broken Hill Proprietary and Esso Australia, went to put out the flames with chemicals. 32 men on board the rig escaped unhurt by jumping into the sea. The oilfield provides much of Melbourne's gas supplies, and there was some interference with production because of the accident