Offshores drillers such as Transocean Ltd., Seadrill Ltd. and Fred Olsen Energy ASA have been caught in a double whammy of falling demand for their services and a glut of new rigs coming into the market.
The records, provided by the U.S. Coast Guard in response to a Freedom of Information Act request, also describe a botched fire drill by the crew of another Shell-contracted drilling rig months before it began boring an exploratory oil well in the Chukchi Sea.
The most severe oil-industry collapse since the 1980s has prompted explorers to curtail drilling budgets, cancel rig contracts and shelve plans to search for untapped crude fields from the Indian Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico.
Transocean, which has its main U.S. offices in Houston, said its profit of $342 million, or 93 cents a share, was down from $587 million, or $1.63 a share, in the April-June period last year. Revenue fell from $2.3 billion to $1.8 billion.
Energy companies grew a little too fat and happy during time of $100 a barrel oil prices, but they have quickly turned a corner to become much more efficient, energy executives said at a Calvetti Ferguson law firm forum.
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