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Sep 21, 2010 6:58 PM by Veronica White

Support Jobs Suffer From Moratorium

The drilling moratorium is getting national attention as people are wondering why rig hands are still working and if the Gulf region is really still suffering.

Local companies like Pro-Log in New Iberia say, yes, they are suffering. Pro Log is an oilfield service company in that makes portable test labs and housing for offshore workers.

Since the drilling moratorium took effect they have had cancelled orders, projects left unfinished and a rental fleet with a 35% dive in usage.

"Never in the years I've been in this business have I witnessed such a dramatic downturn and such an uncertain future," says company President JoAnn Parker.

While some oil related businesses suffer, though, rig hands are still work. The Louisiana Workforce Commission reports no unemployment claims for rig hands.
The reason, according to the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association, is:

"Those rigs haven't lost any employees-- they're all under contract, so they're keeping them on repainting, refurbishing, things like that," says LOGA President Don Briggs.

However, for each rig hand, there are 8 support jobs. These workers are from companies like Pro Log, which has lost revenue and four staff members.

Pro Log services most of the 33 deepwater rigs halted by the moratorium.

"When you saw pictures of the deepwater horizon burning-- you saw our building burning, and other people's buildings burning. It's a depression," says Heidi Martin from Pro-Log.

The labor department estimates six to seven hundred people in these types of companies have lost their jobs since the oil spill.

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