State producer Pemex confirmed on Monday that a fire at an offshore oil platform in Mexico caused the company to lower crude production by 421,000 bbl/day.
The platform's main function is to generate electricity and to send natural gas for injection into oil wells, said Octavio Romero, general director of Pemex. He made his comments during a press conference.
Because of the fire, oil production was cut by 421,000 bbl/day at 125 wells, Romero said. Pemex seeks to restart production as soon as possible.
Romero did not specify a time frame.
In a statement, the company said the fire took place at the E-Ku-A2 platform in the Ku-Maloob-Zaap field in the Bay of Campeche. The accident killed a Pemex employee and four workers from Cotemar, a contractor.
Cotemar acknowledged the accident in a statement.
Pemex said the fire started on Sunday and it has brought the blaze under control.
The accident took place during scheduled maintenance, Pemex said. The company is investigating the cause of the fire, but stressed that it was not caused by a lack of investing in maintenance.
If Pemex reduces oil production, then that could limit supplies of ethane for its ethylene plants. All of Mexico's crackers rely on ethane as a feedstock and Mexico gets most of its domestic ethane from the associated gas produced from its oil wells.
Over the years, Mexico's oil production has fallen, causing domestic ethane supplies to drop as well.
The country now has an ethane shortage and relies on imports from the US to make up a portion of the deficit.