Filipino fatality in blast identified
MANILA, Philippines - The Filipino fatality in the oil production platform in the Gulf of Mexico has been identified, while search continues for the other Filipino still missing after the accident.
Contract worker Elroy Corporal, 42, has been identified as the fatality in the explosion, the Philippine embassy in Washington, DC said in a statement Monday, November 19.
His family in Iligan City has been notified by the embassy.
Corporal's remains have been brought to New Orleans, Louisiana and is now being prepared for repatriation to the Philippines after an autopsy, Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose L Cuisia Jr was quoted as saying.
"[The] Embassy said Philippine consular officials are now in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to attend to the remains of Corporal," the statement added.
Meanwhile, the search for the missing Filipino worker continues, under the direction of Black Elk Energy, which owned the platform, after the US Coast Guard has called off its search.
The company has dispatched at least 2 vessels and several divers to continue the search, the Embassy said.
Meanwhile, Embassy officials are also looking into assisting 4 Filipinos being treated for serious burn injuries due to the incident.
One of the injured Filipinos is Wilberto Ilagan, 50, who suffered burns in 35% of his body. He is last reported to be "conscious and in fair condition," the embassy said.
The officials, the embassy said, are also set to meet with 3 other Filipino workers who were at the platform during the incident, as well as with Gulf Isle Shipyard, their employer, and with Black Elk Energy.
Nine Filipino and 5 non-Filipino employees of Gulf Isle Shipyard were on the platform during the incident, but there was no immediate confirmation "whether the three who were not reported missing or injured suffered minor injuries or were unhurt."
"The nine Filipinos who figured in the incident are believed to be among an estimated 162 welders, fitters, scaffolders and riggers who were hired in the Philippines to work in offshore platforms in the Gulf of Mexico," the embassy said. - Rappler.com