At 10:10 p.m, Jan. 6, the drilling rig Kulluk was successfully refloated. There were no reported injuries and no indication of an oil spill resulting from the pull-off from the grounding. The Aiviq is towing the Kulluk toward Kiliuda Bay. The assessment team on board the rig continues to assess it while en route. The Nanuq, a spill response vessel, has a forward-looking infrared (FLIR) thermal imaging system on board used to survey for fuel on the water surface. At 2:57 a.m., Jan. 7, it was reported that no visible fuel was trailing the Kulluk. The Coast Guard has established a 500-yard safety zone around the moving rig. Spill response vessels with readied equipment and tugs are following behind. As of 3 a.m., Jan. 7, the Kulluk remains in tow by the Aiviq traveling at 4.8 knots (5.5 mph). The location of the Kulluk is approximately 19 miles from land.
Weather permitting, a Helo flight is scheduled for first light to survey the shoreline where the Kulluk was grounded. The flight will include representatives from Alaska Dept. of Environmental Conservation, Shell, Old Harbor, as well as a biologist from LGL Alaska Research Associates.
The Unified Command continues to monitor the progress of the Kulluk tow.
This is essentially a press release from the State of Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation 7 Jan 2013