The flow of gas was diverted around 8.40 am after closing the Blowout Preventer (BoP) and flaring part of the gas which was diverted to two flare pits
Tinsukia: Public sector giant Oil India Limited inched a step closer to kill the blowout well on Sunday after it succeeded in "restoration of diversion of gas" from blowout well to Baghjan Early Production System (EPS) in Assam's Tinsukia.
The development came a week after OIL had to halt the diversion of the gas operation after leakage was observed at the thread of wellhead casing, hours after achieving major success in diverting the gas paving way for snubbing operations to kill the well, prompting it to put the well back to blowout status with fire at 5.25 pm on September 7, and at a time when OIL lost a young engineer Arnab Kishore Bordoloi while testing electric connection for the repairing job at the well site. The fire has been raging again since then.
Confirming the development, OIL spokesperson Tridiv Hazarika said, to reduce the surface level well head pressure of the blowout well number 5 at Baghjan, the restoration of diversion of flow of gas from the well head to Baghjan EPS and two flare pits was successfully achieved today. "The operation was carried out after experts from M/s Alert Damage Control and OIL completed the inspection of the wellhead and safety inspection along with specific job safety analysis of entire system on Saturday."
Hazarika said, "The flow of gas was diverted around 8.40 am after closing the Blowout Preventer (BoP) and flaring part of the gas which was diverted to two flare pits."
"Once the whole system is stabilised, next line of actions will be undertaken for well-killing operation," Hazarika said, adding, "Wellhead pressures and related parameters are being monitored constantly. All safety precautions are in place and the wellhead, BOP stack, choke manifold & ground x-mas tree are being continuously sprayed with water for cooling purpose."
According to sources, now that the diversion of gas operation has succeeded experts will go for snubbing operation to kill the well in all likelihood.
Flare Pit is an earthen pit excavated close to drilling wells to burn the gas while snubbing operation is an operation to stop the gas from coming to the surface.
The "blowout" occurred at the gas well number 5 at Baghjan oilfield, at a close proximity of Maguri-Motapung Beel and Dibru Saikhowa National Park, while workover operations was going on to produce gas from new sand at a depth of 3,729 metres, leaving natural gas and condensate oil gush to hundred feet of in the air and spill all around.
Earlier, OIL's "kill the well" operation failed on August 18, a day after getting huge success in installing Blowout Preventer (BoP) stack over the wellhead after two failed attempts, compelling them to make a shift in their strategy.