Environmental Policy News

BSEE Review Includes Recommendations for Seal Assembly and Cement Failures

The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) recently announced the release of a technical review following the underground loss of well control that resulted in gas flow into a shallow sand reservoir during a February 2013 incident onboard a Gulf of Mexico drilling rig. This loss of well control incident created a risk of broaching of the well to the seafloor, which created significant risks to the crew, the rig, and the environment.

The report includes recommendations including consideration of modifying BSEE regulations to ensure that the integrity of the seal assembly and cement column can be verified after installation, as well as requiring operators to verify that any pressure containing equipment installed downhole has been designed, tested, and rated for any potential loss of well control condition to which it might be exposed.

For more information, visit www.bsee.gov/uploadedFiles/BSEE/Inspection_and_Enforcement/Accidents_and_Incidents/QC-FIT_Reports/QC-FIT%20Report%20Apache%20Liner%20Seal%20.pdf.

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