Owner of Burning Rig Considers Relief Well

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New Orleans, La.
The owner of a drilling rig that's ablaze in the Gulf of Mexico says a relief well may be drilled as part of a plan to control the natural gas well that blew wild.

A news release from Hercules Offshore Inc. says the relief well is among the options being considered.

It says it's also trying to find out why the well blew and then caught fire, but its first focus is cutting off the flow of natural gas.

Federal authorities say no sheens were sighted near the well Wednesday during a flyover. The lack of sheen indicates the gas is burning off with no sign that oil or other hydrocarbons are being released into the water.

Officials stressed that Tuesday's blowout won't be nearly as damaging as the 2010 BP oil spill. Hercules says all 44 workers on the jackup rig were rescued without injury.