Gulf oil platform explodes off LA coast

(AP) - An oil platform exploded and burned off the Louisiana coast Thursday, the second such disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in less than

NEW ORLEANS - (AP) - An oil platform exploded and burned off the Louisiana coast Thursday, the second such disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in less than five months. This time, the Coast Guard saidthere was no leak, and no one was killed.

The Coast Guard initially reported that an oil sheen a mile longand 100 feet wide had begun to spread from the site of the blast,about 200 miles west of the source of BP's massive spill. But hourslater, Coast Guard Cmdr. Cheri Ben-Iesau said crews were unable tofind any spill.

The company that owns the platform, Houston-based MarinerEnergy, did not know what caused the explosion.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said Mariner officials told himthere were seven active production wells on the platform, and theywere shut down shortly after the fire broke out.

Jindal said the company told him the fire began in 100 barrelsof light oil condensate, but officials did not know yet whatsparked the flames.

The Coast Guard said Mariner Energy reported the oil sheen. In apublic statement, the company said an initial flyover did not showany oil.

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