Thursday, May 13, 2010

Fragments from the Past

I remember the one that almost got away from us one night. Down near the Mexican border. At around midnight. It started kicking and I told the hands to "get ready to shut her in." On orders from the engineer, they didn't try to kill it until the "mud kicked up to the crown" (top of the rig) - that was his order before he turned over and went back to sleep - and when it did, I told the hands to shut her in AND THEY HAD NOT GOTTEN READY. They had to charge up a big compressed-air tank to power the rams. I never spent a longer 15 minutes as it kicked several more times. Meanwhile they were adding weight to the mud, and I was afraid some higher zones would succumb to the added weight, so I made them add lost-circulation material too. It was the right thing to do. And they shut it in (finally!) and began circulating under pressure and all was well.

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