Two oil wells operated by Nigeria's Eroton on fire -oil spills agency

By Tife Owolabi

Yenagoa, Nigeria (Reuters) - Two oil wells operated by Nigerian firm Eroton Exploration and Production Limited caught fire on Monday and were still burning on Tuesday after the company hired a contractor to try extinguish the fire, the agency responsible for detecting oil spills said.

It was not immediately clear if this was the same area where a well operated by Eroton spilled oil and gas into the Niger Delta for more than a week in June.

Eroton produces and exports crude from its Oil Mining Lease 18 block through the Nembe Creek Trunkline.

The National Oil Spills Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) said the fire broke out at two wells in Rivers state, in the Niger Delta. A boat suspected to have been engaging in theft of crude oil was burnt to ashes at the site.

"The company has mobilised a vendor, which is expected to arrive at the incident location today, October 4, 2022 to extinguish the raging fire from the wells, the agency will supervise the activity accordingly," Idris Musa, head of NOSDRA said in a statement.

Oil spills are common in the oil producing Niger Delta where crude production has been hobbled by theft and vandalism of pipelines, hitting Nigeria's export earnings.

(Reporting by Tife Owolabi, editing by MacDonald Dzirutwe and Marguerita Choy)