This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Oil Workers Describe Floating For Days In Gulf

Stocks in this article: GOK

JUAN A. LOZANO

HOUSTON (AP) â¿¿ When waves as high as 40 feet disabled the 94-foot research vessel Jeremy Parfait and nine other oil workers were on in the Gulf of Mexico last month, he knew there was only one place they could go â¿¿ into the water.

But their boat, which normally would be elevated above the water by several metal legs, had toppled in the tropical storm and was floating helplessly, beaten by waves and wind. The 10 men jumped into the Gulf and clung to a 6-foot-by-3-foot raft.

"We know we don't want to go in that water. I can see it in their eyes. They are scared to death. They don't want to go in that water. I don't want to go in that water," said Parfait, the boat's captain.

Parfait, 39, and Ted Derise Jr., 32, told The Associated Press on Friday that the ordeal was a nightmare in which they saw friends and co-workers slowly die. The workers abandoned their vessel Sept. 8 about eight miles off shore from Frontera in the southeastern Mexican state of Tabasco. It was nearly four days before they were rescued. Three died in the water, and a fourth died later at a hospital.

As the men floated, Mexico's state oil company, Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex, and the Mexican navy mounted a nearly 10,000-square-mile search by air and sea. Most were found just before noon Sept. 11 about 50 miles off the coast of the Mexican state of Campeche.

Derise and Parfait, who are from Louisiana, said they were pushed to the breaking point but never lost hope they would be rescued.

"When we hit the water, I kept telling them, 'They are going to come find us,'" Parfait said.

Along with Derise and Parfait, four Mexican oil workers and a Bangladeshi were rescued alive. Craig Myers, 32, and another American, Nicholas Reed, 31, both from Louisiana, were found dead. The Bangladeshi man, Nadimuzzman Khan, later died of exposure in a Mexican hospital. The body of another worker, Aaron Houweling of Australia, who had floated away earlier, was found three days later.

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,614.81 +215.14 1.31%
S&P 500 1,941.28 +37.27 1.96%
NASDAQ 4,419.4780 +103.4040 2.40%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs