Royal Dutch Shell Plc has managed to refloat its drilling rig Kulluk that ran aground offshore Alaska, after breaking free from tugboats last week. The Kulluk was driven aground by violent weather on the southeast shoreline of nearby Sitkalidak Island on December 31, 2012, while under tow from Alaska to Seattle, Washington State.
The rig is currently under damage assessment, and so far no breaches to the hull have been found and no oil has spilled from the vessel, according to CbsNews.
Kulluk will be towed about 30 miles (48 kilometers) to Kiliuda Bay for additional testing.
Martin Padilla, commander of the refloating effort, stated that they will continue to be cautious and ensure safe transportation of the vessel.
Three more tugs are on standby along with the US Coast Guard cutter Alex Haley and two oil spill response vessels.
Offshore Energy Today Staff, January 7, 2013