BBC: Valaris Drillship Goes Adrift off Scotland


A Valaris drillship reportedly went adrift on Tuesday evening, breaking free from moorings near the port at Hunterston, North Ayrshire, Scotland.

This is according to BBC which reported Wednesday that "a major rescue operation has been ongoing overnight," when the 228 meters drillship, Valaris DS4, broke free and started drifting without power.

According to the news agency, coastguard rescue teams, vessels, and a helicopter were dispatched to the scene, and no injuries have been reported.

Offshore Engineer has reached out to Valaris and Maritime and Coastguard Agency, seeking more info. We'll update the article with any response we may receive.

The drillship, built in 2010 by Samsung Heavy Industries was originally delivered to Pride International under the name of Deep Ocean Clarion. Drilling contractor Ensco in 2011 acquired Pride, renaming the deepwater drillship to Ensci DS-4. 

The vessel was then renamed Valaris DS4 following the merger between Rowan and Ensco in 2019, when the company was renamed Valaris.

London-based Valaris, which was at the time of the merger, the world's largest offshore drilling contractor by fleet size, in August last year filed for bankruptcy in a move to restructure its debt load and reduce debt by more than $6.5 billion.

The company at the time said the debt restructuring efforts were not expected to affect its day-to-day operations.

"Our customers should experience no interruption during this process. Our contracts remain intact and we will operate as normal...The restructuring process will not affect the day rates," Valaris said in August 2020.

Map showing the location of Valaris DS4 drillship, with a RNLI lifeboat next to it - Credit: MarineTraffic (More to follow...)

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