This paper describes the mobilization of a snubbing unit and blowout preventer (BOP) stack in the Middle East and their use to enable the control of a well with an underground blowout and surface broaching within a short time. The mobilization timeline is provided, along with details about how the snubbing unit and BOPs were integrated with existing equipment to enable re-entry into the blowout well. The procedures and equipment used to enable a stable rig up and well entry are discussed. The paper also describes the situation within the well and the procedures used to enable control. Changes to the original plan, the reasons for the changes, and the results are also described.
Mobilization, rig up, and testing were completed within 12 days of receiving instructions to proceed. The well was controlled and left in a safe condition within an additional 14 days. The original plan had to be continuously reviewed and modified as more information became available during the snubbing operation. The original plan was to slip and shear the holed completion out of the well under pressure; however, as described in the paper, this plan was not implemented. The rapid deployment and use of the snubbing unit brought control to a deteriorating situation. Snubbing provided the fastest option to gain control of this well with an underground blowout and surface broaching.