In last minute, experts removed BoP as one strap of Athey Wagon found to be snapped

Tinsukia: Public sector giant Oil India Limited (OIL) has succeeded in placing Blowout Preventer (BoP) on the “blowout” well at Baghjan, which caught fire on June 9 leaving a trail of damage, in Assam’s Tinsukia district on Monday morning.

An important leg of the capping operation will be completed in some hours. After capping is complete, it will take another 24 to 36 hours to douse the fire

As per latest reports, one of the bull lines (out of two) connected with Athey Wagon got snapped and the entire load was on one line only. Therefore, it has been decided to remove the stack and take back the Athey wagon.

Source said, “one of the pendent wire ropes which was tested at 19 tonne has given away. It may be that due to long exposure of heat, rope has come out from socket. Hence, the BoP stack has been removed from well and cooling it before taking it further to keep it on test stump.”

The development comes days after the first attempt to cap the well failed on July 31 and 76 days after the blowout occurred.

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, on May 27 while work over operations was operations was going on to produce gas from new sand (oil and gas bearing reservoir) 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.

Confirming the development, OIL chairman and managing director Sushil Chandra Mishra said, “The BoP stack has been placed using Athey Wagon during the second attempt. However, BoP stack is somewhat tilted.”

“Experts and technical team are aligning the BoP so that fasteners can be fastened and installation can be completed,” Mishra said, adding, “It will take another 24 to 36 hours to douse the fire.”

Blow Out Preventer, is a safety equipment, designed to prevent uncontrolled flow of crude oil and natural gas wells to prevent blowouts, the uncontrolled release of crude oil or natural gas from a well. It is used to seal, control and monitor oil and gas wells.

On July 31, OIL maiden attempt to cap the well failed after the Athey Wagon toppled and had to be brought to OIL workshop in Duliajan for repairing

The incident happened when the 90 feet long Athay wagon, with a capacity of 20 tonne, was lifting a 6 tonne BoP along with a riser fitted to the BoP to place it on the well.

Once the BoP is installed, the operation to kill the well will start

The Athay wagon is a contraption used as an extended arm attached to a bull dozer to lift equipment from a safe distance, especially in well control operations when BoP or other devices need to be place near or on the well head with gas or crude oil coming out or well is on fire

Once the BoP is installed, the operation to kill the well will start. “Fluid and chemical mud will be pumped into the well to kill it and douse the fire,” Tridip Hazarika, OIL spokesperson said.

OIL has 22 wells at Baghjan oilfield – an important oilfield when it comes to production of crude oil and extraction of natural gas in Assam. These include 18 oil wells and four gas wells.

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