Given the sustained intensity of the fire on the K.S. Endeavor drill rig that ignited off the coast of Nigeria yesterday morning, we’re starting to think a total loss of well control occurred.
We assume the rig was drilling Chevron’s “Funiwa Deep” natural gas exploration well. Since gas was the target, we hope that means the risk of a major oil spill is low.
What’s next? The rig will probably collapse soon from the intense sustained heat. It’s possible that will extinguish the fire, although the natural gas and/or gas condensate release will continue to pose a serious fire/explosion hazard until Chevron can plug the leaking well. They’ll have to bring in another rig to drill a relief well.