Well controlled after Bakken blowout

Blowout: a well in North Dakota spewed yellow mist for more than 24 hours before being brought under control

A blown out well that spewed oil, gas and saltwater in a yellowish plume in the Bakken tight-oil region of North Dakota was brought under control before daybreak Friday morning.

Privately held Slawson Exploration lost control of the well around 18:00 local time on Wednesday. The well remained out of control until settling on its own, local newspaper Bismarck Tribune reported.

A Wild Well Control crew harnessed the well around 5:00 Firday morning the newspaper said.

“The well gave us a little window and we took it,” Kyle Waliezer, Slawson superintendent, told the newspaper.

The Houston-based well-control company declared the well secure before leaving the scene about 9:00 on Friday.

The well is located in Mountrail County about 10 miles south-west of Parshall, North Dakota, near the Van Hook Arm recreational area and state wildlife management area.

Waliezer said the company will resume the workover operation that was going on before it lost control of the well.

He was unable to provide a reason for the blowout. The blowout preventer was in place but will be examined for failure, he told the newspaper.

Oil & Gas Division spokeswoman Alison Ritter said Slawson will have 10 days to file a detailed report, including plans to clean up the site.

There were no injuries reported.

Escaped fluids were contained within a berm and vacuumed up for salvage. The fluid that escaped through the pressurised plume could not be recovered.

Waliezer could not immediately say how much fluid had escaped or how much was recovered.

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