New platforms rise to meet Gulf of Mexico drilling boom (photos)

The giants are visible from more than 20 miles away, rising like monuments from the shores of the Gulf of Mexico.

The oil platforms under construction — huge structures of steel piping, cranes and heavy machinery on top of towering iron hulls — are part of the first wave of major producing vessels moving into the Gulf of Mexico since business went on hold following the BP oil spill in 2010. Oil companies like Shell, Chevron and Anadarko Petroleum Corp. are rushing to start up the new platforms, which will tap into oil fields in the frontier regions of Gulf of Mexico’s deep waters.

Thousands of workers were building at least five massive vessels at yards in Ingleside, Texas, last week. Here’s a look at the bustle of work underway there.