Alaskan oil and gas firm agrees to settle Jones Act case for $10m

Furie Operating Alaska has agreed a settlement whereby it will pay a $10m civil penalty for a 2011 incident in which it used a foreign-flagged vessel to transport a drilling rig to Cook Inlet, in violation of the Jones Act.

The Anchorage-based oil and gas company had been contesting the penalty since 2012 when it was first punished by US Customs and Border Protection for not acquiring a waiver from the Department of Homeland Security before moving the Spartan 151 jack-up rig from the Gulf of Mexico.

On the books since 1920, the Jones Act requires US ships and crews to be used for transporting items between US ports.

Waivers can be granted if it can be proven there is no US vessel capable of doing the job or if there is a pressing national defence issue.

This $10m settlement is the largest penalty ever incurred under the Act.

Donal Scully

With 28 years experience writing and editing for newspapers in the UK and Hong Kong, Donal is now based in California from where he covers the Americas for Splash as well as ensuring the site is loaded through the Western Hemisphere timezone.
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