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Leak closes Norwegian LNG plant

Jan. 13, 2012 at 9:58 AM

HAMMERFEST, Norway, Jan. 13 (UPI) -- Norwegian energy company Statoil said it was forced to shut down some production of liquefied natural gas when a water main broke at a plant near Hammerfest.

Statoil said a "fire water line" ruptured at its LNG plant in Melkoya near Hammerfest, causing the company to implement a controlled production shut down at the plant.

The facility receives natural gas from the Snohvit field in Norway and production there was halted as well. Statoil said it was producing about 48,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day from that field.

"We are working to clarify the cause of the water leakage and preparing the repair work, so that we can resume production quickly," said Oivind Nilsen, production director for Hammerfest LNG, in a statement.

Statoil said it regularly tests and inspects the water line. The latest inspection was Wednesday. The company added that it was "too soon" to make estimates regarding the duration of the shut down.

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