It’s not enough that the season’s first hurricane is threatening damage, now the oceans are giving us eyes of fire.
Picture a satellite photo of the eye of a hurricane. Now use your CGI skills to make the eye made up of fire.
That’s what happened Friday in the ocean off Mexico’s Gulf Coast, where an underwater pipeline rupture caused flames to spread in a circular pattern on the water’s surface.
An oil drilling platform was only a short number of yards away from the flames, and watercraft rushed to help douse the fire.
Mexico’s state-owned oil company Petroleos Mexicanos, known as Pemex, confirmed the fire was out, assisted by those boats sent by Pemex to pump water over the flames.
Media outlets reported sources saying oil workers also used nitrogen to battle the blaze.
Officials said the flames were finally doused about five and a half hours after the fire appeared around 5:15 a.m. local time Friday.
As of Saturday morning, no injuries were reported and officials said there was still no signs of an oil spill.
The image of an ocean ablaze naturally caught the attention of social media, where the “eye on fire” photos were circulating widely late Friday.
Sources told Reuters the fire began in a part of the pipeline that connects to the platform at Pemex’s offshore oil field.
The cause of the incident will be investigated.
According to a source in a Daily Mail story, the incident report included the oil drilling platform’s turbomachinery was “affected by an electrical storm and heavy rains.”
That location, Ku Maloob Zaap, is Pemex’s biggest crude oil producer with more than 700,000 barrels – north of 40 percent of its nearly 1.7 million barrels of daily production.