VENICE, La., April 21 (UPI) -- An oil rig was still burning off the Louisiana coast late Wednesday as the Coast Guard searched for 11 missing workers.
The blaze on the Deepwater Horizon was touched off by an explosion late Tuesday. Firefighters working from fireboats were trying to extinguish burning crude oil, The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune reported.
The mobile drilling platform in mile-deep water is owned by a Swiss corporation, Transocean Ltd., and leased by British Petroleum.
The Coast Guard was ready to remain on the scene all night, Rear Adm. Mary Landry said.
"We will continue searching as long as it is reasonable that we might still find someone," she said.
The Coast Guard said there were 126 people on the rig at the time of the blast, and 115 were rescued. Seventeen were reported injured, three of them critically. The injured were flown to the mainland, while 98 other employees were brought to Port Fourchon, La., by boat.
Landry told The Times-Picayune the rig was spewing crude oil at the rate of 13,000 gallons an hour. But she said most of the oil was being burned and suggested there would be no major spill.