One Missing, Six Injured in Platform Explosion on Lake Pontchartrain, Louisiana

Flames are seen after an explosion at an oil rig in Lake Pontchartrain, in Louisiana, in this still image taken from social media video taken October 15, 2017. Roger Fernandez/via REUTERS

One person is missing and six others have been injured after an explosion on an oil platform in Lake Pontchartrain near Kenner, Louisiana, Sunday evening, the Coast Guard has confirmed.

Coast Guard Sector New Orleans received a report from a witness at approximately 8 p.m. of an oil platform explosion.

The Coast Guard said Sunday night that one of the platform workers reported that eight people were aboard the platform at the time of the explosion, and one person did not make it to shore. Six of the seven people taken to shore were brought to the hospital, the Coast Guard said.

The Coast Guard is coordinating search efforts for the missing man. Sector New Orleans has launched a 29-foot Response Boat-Small boatcrew, a 45-foot Response Boat-Medium boatcrew, and a MH-65 Dolphin Helicopter air crew. Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, Jefferson County Parish, and St. Charles Parish also have marine units on scene. Bayou Gauche Fire Department and a good Samaritan vessel are on scene fighting the fire, which has been reduced substantially, the Coast Guard said.

The name of the missing man is not being released at this time.

The cause of the incident is unknown, the Coast Guard said.

Kenner Police Department spokesman Sergeant Brian McGregor told the Times-Picayune newspaper earlier that there were “a lot of injuries,” with at least six confirmed and more expected.

St. Charles Parish said on its Facebook page that an oil rig was on fire in the lake near New Orleans and had “caused the loud sound earlier tonight.”

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