Oil Rig Explosion, Fire in Gulf Coast

An oil and gas rig off the coast of Louisiana was hit by an explosion and fire this morning, leaving crew members missing.

The U.S. Coast Guard confirmed that a Black Elk Energy Co. oil and natural gas platform had some sort of explosion occur in the gulf, sending plumes of black smoke into the sky over the water.

Two people are missing and "probably overboard," according to Coast Guard spokesman Carlos Vega.

Four people aboard the platform were airlifted for medical treatment.

The platform was located about 20 nautical miles southeast of Grand Isle, La., when the explosion happened, Vega said. It is not clear whether the platform is still burning.

There has been no report that any oil spilled into the gulf.

The Louisiana governor's office said that the rig was non-producing, and the explosion occurred during some kind of maintenance work happening aboard the platform.

The explosion and fire comes the day after BP agreed to a $4 billion settlement for the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion in the gulf, triggering the worst offshore oil spill in the country's history.

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