Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Gulf oil rigs withstand Gustav's Category 3 attack

Hurricane Gustav may not have shaken up oil markets in the end, but it taught traders a lesson for next time: The oil infrastructure of rigs and platforms dotting the Gulf Coast can handle a Category 3 storm.

James Cordier, an oil futures trader in Tampa, said minimal damage from Gustav and decreasing global demand gave investors the confidence they lacked in the wake of the hurricanes of 2005.

Before Gustav, "every time a storm came out, the energy market cringed," Cordier said. "People are really breathing a sigh of relief that we withstood a Category 3 without damage."

Crude oil futures closed at $109.71 a barrel Tuesday on the New York Mercantile Exchange, falling $5.75. Gas prices stayed steady at $3.684 average for regular unleaded nationwide and $3.63 in the Tampa Bay area, according to AAA.

As of late Tuesday, all gulf rigs and about 12 percent of refineries remained shut down as workers surveyed the damage. Risk Management Solutions Inc. estimated oil-drilling damage from the storm could total $1-billion to $3-billion.

David Mica, director of the Florida Petroleum Council, said the industry remains optimistic, but it's too early to tell if or how the shutdowns will have a delayed effect on gasoline prices in Florida.

"There is now a burp in the system, and how big and how long that burp is we'll have to wait and see," he said.

Unlike hurricanes Rita and Katrina, which hit the Gulf Coast as Category 3 storms, respectively, in 2005, Gustav entered the gulf as a Category 3 and was barely a Category 2 when it made landfall Monday west of New Orleans.

Mica said rigs and platforms have been reinforced with structural moorings, better bolts and stronger steel since the 2005 storms, when flooding also caused severe damage to other infrastructure such as refineries and pipelines.

Gulf oil rigs withstand Gustav's Category 3 attack 09/02/08 [Last modified: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 4:51pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Who's behind the mysterious butt graffiti all over St. Petersburg?

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — The first butts, perhaps, appeared in April on some steps behind the Sundial shopping plaza.

    A photo of the butt graffiti that has been cropping up around St. Petersburg in the past several months. [CHRISTOPHER SPATA | STAFF]
  2. During the most expensive mayoral election ever, St. Petersburg City Council wants to limit PAC money

    Blogs

    ST. PETERSBURG — In front of a large group of red-shirted campaign finance reform supporters, the St. Petersburg City Council on Thursday started the ball rolling on an ordinance that would limit individual campaign contributions to $5,000 from political action committees.

    A large crowd gathered Thursday to support passage of a controversial measure to limit campaign spending in city elections
  3. Minority business accelerator launch by Tampa chamber to aid black, Hispanic businesses

    Business

    A "minority business accelerator" program was launched Thursday by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce geared toward helping black and Hispanic business owners identify and overcome barriers to grow their companies. The accelerator, known as MBA, will provide participants with business tools to cultivate opportunities …

    Bemetra Simmons is a senior private banker at Wells Fargo, The Private Bank. She is also chair of the new minority business accelerator program for the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. [Photo, LinkedIn]
  4. Peter Budaj loves 'vibe' with Lightning

    Blogs

    Two years ago, nobody was willing to give Peter Budaj a shot, the veteran goalie wondering if he'd ever play in the NHL again.

    Peter Budaj signed a two-year extension with the Lightning, worth $1.025 million per year.
  5. A test the Rays haven't passed

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — I have no idea what to think about the Rays. Not a clue.

    Tampa Bay Rays players celebrate their 8-3 win over the Cincinnati Reds Wednesday, June 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg.