The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) on Saturday confirmed that the flow of natural gas from a damaged well in Vermilion Block 356 in the Gulf of Mexico was stopped by pumping weighted drilling fluids into the well.

The well is about 108 miles southwest of Lafayette, LA. Last Thursday at 8:30 a.m. CST there was a loss of control event at the well, where EnVen Energy Ventures LLC of Metairie, LA, was drilling with a jack-up rig owned by Rowan Companies plc (see Daily GPI, Jan. 31).

"While the natural gas flow has stopped, there is additional work required to secure the well that includes setting barriers to ensure that no natural gas is released," BSEE said. The agency approved EnVen's procedures for the pumping operation, which began at 4:45 p.m. CST last Friday.

"EnVen Energy is working in close cooperation with BSEE to determine the cause of this incident and the path forward for safely resuming drilling operations," the company said.