NEW YORK, Sept 19 (Reuters) – BP Plc halted production at its Thunder Horse platform in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico on Monday following a power outage, a company spokesman confirmed on Tuesday.

The benchmark for sour crude rallied to its strongest in more than two years on the disruption.

BP evacuated its workforce of about 300 people from the facility after the power outage as a precaution, according to the statement. Technical and essential personnel were scheduled to return to the platform on Tuesday.

The platform has the ability to produce up to 265,000 barrels of oil a day, and was producing about 180,000 barrels a day as of May.

BP’s four operated platforms in the Gulf can produce up to a total of 695,000 barrels of crude a day. Thunder Horse was the company’s largest producing Gulf platform in 2016.

Mars Sour Crude traded at up to $2.30 a barrel premium to U.S. crude futures, the strongest in more than two years, on Tuesday.

The platform was recently evacuated Sept. 6 ahead of Hurricane Irma.

There is no permanent structural damage at the facility, according to a person familiar with the platform who was not authorized to speak with the media.

(Reporting By Jessica Resnick-Ault and Arathy S Nair, additional reporting by Catherine Ngai in New York and Erwin Seba in Houston; Editing by onathan Oatis and Diane Craft)

Copyright 2017 Thomson Reuters. Click for Restrictions.

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