Operations suspended after chain falls near workers on N.S. offshore drill rig

HALIFAX — Operations of some non-producing wells at the Sable Offshore Energy Project have been suspended after an accident on a drilling rig involved in decommissioning wells off Nova Scotia.

A news release Thursday from the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board reported a near miss on Nov. 5 after a chain dropped on the Noble Regina Allen rig.

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The safety officer with the regulator confirmed that a 15-metre chain, along with a swivel and shackle with a combined weight of 225 pounds, fell to the deck in the derrick area.

There were five workers in the area at the time, but no one was injured.

The board says work was immediately stopped and a safety "stand down" was held with all involved personnel.

A spokeswoman for the regulator said it was not known when the Noble Regina Allen would resume normal operations on the Venture well decommissioning.

A spokesman for ExxonMobil said production of natural gas continues in two of the original five fields, Alma and South Venture.

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