A rig located just west of where the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded and sank last April, killing eleven workers and subsequently releasing millions of barrels of oil and gas into the gulf.
Thirteen workers were reported "overboard," but all are now safe and accounted for. One worker is said to have sustained injuries, apparently non-life threatening.
Smoke is reported rising from the platform, owned by Texas-based Mariner Energy, but it is as yet unclear whether the explosion has caused any underground leaking of oil. Emergency crews are speeding to the scene in boats and helicopters.
Officials say the rig was "not actively producing any product" at the time of the explosion