Oil well control
Oil well control is the management of the dangerous effects caused by the unexpected release of formation fluid, such as natural gas and/or crude oil, upon surface equipment of oil or gas drilling rigs and escaping into the atmosphere. Technically, oil well control involves preventing the formation fluid, usually referred to as kick, from entering into the wellbore during drilling.Formation fluid can enter the wellbore if the pressure exerted by the column of drilling fluid is not great enough to overcome the pressure exerted by the fluids in the formation being drilled. Oil well control also includes monitoring a well for signs of impending influx of formation fluid into the wellbore during drilling and procedures, to stop the well from flowing when it happens by taking proper remedial actions.Failure to manage and control these pressure effects can cause serious equipment damage and injury, or loss of life. Improperly managed well control situations can cause blowouts, which are uncontrolled and explosive expulsions of formation fluid from the well, potentially resulting in a fire.