Video: Iranian Oil Rig Sinks Into Persian Gulf

Workers still aboard, a 4-million pound oil rig in Iran’s South Pars gas field sank into the Persian gulf in a matter of seconds Jan. 28. The rig—worth about $40 million—belonged to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and was just being installed when it met it descended to its doom.

“An investigation is under way,” Maritime Industrial Co. managing director Mehdi Etesami told the Iranian Students News Agency, but he did not offer any official cause.

In a rare request, Iran asked for assistance in recovering the gas platform form the seabed, the Mehr news agency reported. The now-sunken equipment was built over a 30-month period by SADRA, an Iran Revolutionary Guard industrial-wing affiliate. Because of its affiliation with the Guards, SADRA is subject to sanctions imposed by the European Union and the United States over Iran’s nuclear program. Still, Tehran is seeking foreign aid to recover the equipment, a move that emphasizes the economic damage felt by the oil platform’s sinking.