• Filipino missing in Gulf of Mexico


    The United States Coast Guard is continuing its search and rescue operation for the missing Filipino offshore oil worker who fell off an oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico over the weekend, the Philippine Embassy in Washington said Tuesday (Manila time).

    A statement from the embassy said they were informed by the Coast Guard that the search for 38-year-old Peter Jorge Voces included two cutters, two helicopters, two fixed-wing aircraft and six civilian offshore supply vessels.

    The identity of the Filipino was released after his next-of-kin was informed of the incident.

    Philippine Ambassador to Washington Jose Cuisia Jr. said they have been informed by the US Coast Guard that “they are searching aggressively for our missing kababayan.”

    “We hope and pray that they will find him tomorrow,” he added.

    Voces is reportedly a registered overseas worker hired by Offshore Specialty Fabricators based in Houma in Louisiana.

    The Filipino fell into the gulf while working at the oil platform, Lt. Steve Arguelles of the US Coast Guard Sector New Orleans told the embassy. The accident site is at Vermillion Block 200, which is some 55 miles south of Freshwater Bayou between Lake Charles and Baton Rouge.

    It is 154 milies away from the site of last year’s accident wherein three Filipino oil workers died and three others were seriously injured when an explosion rocked another offshore oil platform also off the coast of Louisiana.

    The embassy in Washington and the Philippine Consulate General in Chicago will “continue to coodinate with the authorities.” BERNICE CAMILLE V. BAUZON


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