By Phaedra Friend Troy
After ransacking the Philippines with near-typhoon strength winds and rain, Tropical Storm Conson is now located over the South China, disrupting offshore operations in its path.
Currently situated about 270 miles west of Manila, Philippines, Tropical Storm Conson is packing sustained winds near 60 miles per hour and gusts up to 75 miles per hour, reports ImpactWeather.
Conson is expected to trek across the South China Sea for the next couple of days, maintaining its Tropical Storm strength. Traveling in a west-northwest direction, the storm is forecasted to make landfall along the southern coast of China.
While the storm may lose strength before making landfall, Tropical Storm Conson is expected to produce heavy rainfall nevertheless.
Oil Companies Enact Safety Measures Offshore
Oil production in the path of the storm has been shut-in, and drilling has been suspended to ensure safety of personnel.
Production at the Wenchang oil fields, operated by CNOOC (NYSE:CEO), in the western Pearl River Mouth Basin is in the process of being shut down for evacuation, reported a Husky (NYSE:HSE) spokesperson. Husky holds a 40 percent interest in the fields.
“We have been advised by the operator, CNOOC, that Wenchang is in the process of being shut down for evacuation,” he said, adding that safety is the company’s No. 1 priority.
Also, the West Hercules drilling rig, operated by Husky, had been conducting exploratory drilling at the Lihua 34-3-1 location (approximately 150 kilometers east of the Wenchang oil field). The well has been suspended, all non-essential personnel have been evacuated, and the rig has been moved east away from the tropical storm’s path, advised the Husky spokesperson.
“We will be monitoring the situation and taking whatever steps are necessary to ensure safe operations,” he added.
Look to PennEnergy's Global Offshore Weather Report daily to find out the most up-to-date wind, weather and wave information for the four busiest offshore regions worldwide.