OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 37 Oil and Gas Wells

Section 781 Well servicing

Subsection 781(1)

Well servicing includes all the maintenance procedures performed on an oil or gas well after the well has been completed and production has begun. Well service activities are generally conducted to maintain or enhance well productivity, although some applications are performed to assess or monitor the performance of the well. Slickline (wireline units other than for well logging), coiled tubing, snubbing, workover rigs, or rod units are used in well servicing activities.

Subsection 781(2)

A well servicing activity can involve the circulation of hydrocarbon fluids and vapours which can create a fire or explosion hazard. To ensure that these vapours are not drawn into a pump motor or ignited by hot exhaust surfaces, the air intake and exhaust of the pump motor must be at least 6 metres away from the rig tank into which the fluids are being circulated.

A tank truck supplying servicing fluid must run its engine to provide power to a pump for unloading or loading these fluids. To avoid the chance of igniting hydrocarbon vapours, the tank truck must be located at least 6 metres away from the rig tank into which the fluids are being circulated.

This subsection requires that the pressure lines supplying carbon dioxide be secured against dislodgment at the supply vehicle and at the pump. Fittings that have a mechanically-locking mechanism such as a hammer union (see Figure 37.17), bolt-up, or camlock with automatic locking arms, are preferable to fittings that must be strapped closed.

Figure 37.17 Cut-away view of a typical hammer union

Subsection 781(3)

The potential danger area is an area circumscribed by an arc the radius of which is equal to the length of the discharge pipeline and centred at either end of the line. Warning signs should also be placed along the perimeter of this area.

Subsection 781(4), 781(5) and 781(6)

No explanation required.