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US Gulf operations slow as storm approaches: Update

20 Jun 2017 21:46 (+01:00 GMT)
US Gulf operations slow as storm approaches: Update

Houston, 20 June (Argus) — Tropical storm Cindy is disrupting energy shipping in the US Gulf of Mexico today as the system swirled toward the Texas and Louisiana coast.

Louisiana Offshore Oil Port (LOOP) stopped unloading tankers early today as a storm approached the crude storage hub and ultra-large crude carrier (ULCC) unloading port.

Vessel offloading at the facility located about 20 miles off shore was halted at 2am ET today and would remain shut until the storm passed and conditions improved, the facility operator said.

Other LOOP assets continued to operate, including a network of storage caverns and above-ground storage and the Zydeco pipeline moving crude from Texas to Houma, Louisiana.

Louisiana river barge pilots in the New Orleans area suspended operations today as conditions worsened. Offshore ship-to-ship transfer zones also began to shut, suspending activity into Thursday evening and early Friday. Zones off the Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi coasts were all scheduled for suspension by 9pm ET today, according to a shipping notification.

The storm was sustaining 45 mile-per-hour winds and expected to deliver up to nine inches of rain in the eastern US Gulf coast, according to the National Hurricane Center, prompting warnings from Texas to Florida. The center of the storm was forecast to make landfall late tomorrow.