WesternZagros Updates Kurdamir-1 Sidetrack Ops

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 5/17/2010, Location: Middle East

WesternZagros Resources Ltd. announces that, while attempting to stabilize the high-pressure hydrocarbon zone encountered at Kurdamir-1 as previously announced, the well has had to be shut in. WesternZagros had drilled the Kurdamir-1 sidetrack hole through the Upper Aaliji Formation into the Lower Aaliji Seal to a depth of 3,214 metres.

At that depth, higher than anticipated pressures were encountered and the Company had planned to set a 7-inch casing liner after stabilizing the well and running wireline logs. While attempting to stabilize the well, a section of the drill string failed, resulting in damage to the drilling mud circulating system and further hampering well control activities.

WesternZagros has activated its Emergency Response Teams both in Calgary and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Although there has been no release of hydrocarbons as a result of these events, hydrodgen sulphide (H2S) gas is present in the wellbore and the possibility exists for further equipment failure. WesternZagros has therefore taken the precaution of moving local inhabitants who are within its Emergency Planning Zone and all non-essential personnel to a safe location. WesternZagros has also engaged well service and control specialists Boots & Coots International Well Control, Inc., who are currently mobilizing personnel and equipment to the drilling site. It is expected that it will take at least thirty days to bring the well back under control.

"The safety of our employees, contractors and the local residents is our number one priority," said Simon Hatfield, CEO of WesternZagros. "We have an experienced team in place who are prepared for incidents such as this and we remain committed to providing a safe environment for the people in the area."

Kurdamir-1 is a wildcat exploration well located on the Kalar Bawanoor Block, in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. WesternZagros is drilling the well with its co-venturers, the Kurdistan Regional Government and Talisman Energy Inc. Further operational updates will be provided as operations progress.


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