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Alberta

World’s largest civilian transport aircraft lifts Red Deer Company to India to battle nightmare well blowout

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Piston Well Services Inc. has been hired to take on a fire that’s been burning for months.

Report from Northeast Today

The world’s largest Civilian transport aircraft ANTONOV (AN124) which has been commissioned for snubbing operation in Baghjan-well number 5 landed at Kolkata airport on Wednesday night from where it will make a 14- day long road journey to reach Baghjan in Assam’s Tinsukia district.

Reportedly, as both the Guwahati and Dibrugarh airport runways are not able to handle the massive Ukrainian ANTONOV (AN124) aircraft, it had to be landed in Kolkata.

As per reports, the 59,000 kgs equipment boarded the An124 heavy-lift aircraft – the world’s largest cargo carrier from Russia. The aircraft is used all over the world for its long haul cargo dropping.

According to the OIL sources, the aircraft was commissioned by Piston Well Service Inc of Canada which was hired by Alert Disaster Control, Singapore. The Alert has been commissioned by OIL for killing the Baghjan-5 well, which was burning since May 27 of this year.

According to the spokesperson of Oil India Limited (OIL) Tridiv Hazarika, the snubbing operation is expected to commence by the beginning of next week and the fire is expected to be snubbed by the first week of November ending months of misery of the people of Baghja

Earlier, the general manager of the company Ross Whelan informed the same through a facebook post saying that a crew had arrived and was ready to board a heavy-lift aircraft from Canada’s Calgary.

“Our crew has arrived, and 59,000kg of our equipment boarded the An124 heavy-lift aircraft in Calgary today,” he said.

On May 27 this year, a blowout occurred in the Baghjan Oil Well, this was followed by an inferno on June 9, after the well suddenly became active while OIL was carrying out workover operations in the gas-producing well under Baghjan Oilfield. OIL lost three men including two firefighters and a young engineer.

Read the whole story including photos of the Antonov at this link

Tinsukia: An aerial view of the Baghjan oil field engulfed in fire, in Tisukia, Assam, Tuesday, June 9, 2020. The field has been leaking gas for the past two weeks. (PTI Photo) (PTI10-06-2020_000035B)

From Ross Whelan, GM of Piston Well Services Inc. in Red Deer.

Piston Well Services Inc. of Alberta is proud to announce the award of a contract to conduct emergency snubbing services for Alert Disaster Control of Singapore on the Baghjan Well #5 blowout in Assam, India.  The scope of work includes mobilizing a crew and snubbing unit with support equipment to facilitate killing, plugging and abandoning the well which blew out on May 27, 2020 and exploded in a remote wetland causing a major human and ecological disaster.

The well is currently capped, and uncontrolled flow is temporarily diverted as wellhead integrity issues caused by the blowout and subsequent fire are preventing the use of traditional well shut-in and kill methods.  A proposed snubbing procedure was confirmed with computer modeling and ordered by the well owner.

Piston’s team engaged to overcome a litany of logistical issues but it’s an honour to deploy our Canadian know-how to bring an unfortunate event to a safe conclusion.

Piston is a snubbing, completions & workover company based in Red Deer, AB, established in 1999 by the industry’s pioneers and continues to serve the Western Canadian Basin with a fleet of proprietary high pressure snubbing units.

Here’s a time-lapse from Piston Well Services Inc. showing the process of loading Rig 6.

 

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Alberta

Two players at Canada’s junior hockey camp test positive for COVID-19

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RED DEER, Alta. — Hockey Canada announced Tuesday that two players at its national junior selection camp have tested positive for COVID-19.

The organization said in a release that the players, who were not named, are in quarantine at the team’s hotel.

Hockey Canada said it is suspending all camp activities for the day, including a scheduled intrasquad game.

Players and team personnel will be required to undergo a COVID-19 test before camp activities resume.

Hockey Canada said provincial and local health authorities have been notified of the positive tests.

The announcement of the positive player tests come three days after Hockey Canada said a “non-core member'” of the team’s staff tested positive.

Alberta reported 1,549 new COVID-19 cases on Monday. It was the fifth consecutive day with numbers above the 1,100 mark.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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Alberta

New measures expected in Alberta and pandemic weight gain: In The News for Nov. 24

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In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what’s on the radar of our editors for the morning of Nov. 24 …

What we are watching in Canada …

EDMONTON — Alberta’s chief medical officer of health says COVID-19 has become like a snowball rolling down a hill, picking up size and speed, and threatening to overwhelm the health system.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw says immediate action is needed to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Premier Jason Kenney and select cabinet ministers were to meet with Hinshaw, and new measures are expected to be announced today.

Alberta, once a leader in how to prepare for and contain the virus, has in recent weeks become a national cautionary tale.

There have been well over 1,000 new cases a day for five straight days, and there are more than 300 patients in hospital and more than 60 in intensive care.

Kenney has said he wants targeted measures to control the virus while keeping businesses as open as possible.

Others, including some doctors, say the focus needs to be on a sharp clampdown, even for a short period.

Also this …

A new poll by Leger and the Association for Canadian Studies suggests many Canadians are gaining weight because they’re eating more and exercising less during COVID-19 pandemic.

Thirty-two per cent of respondents said they have gained weight since March, while 15 per cent said they lost weight over that time.

Jack Jedwab, president of the Association for Canadian Studies, says this is one of the collateral effects of the pandemic, as the survey suggests there is a link between weight gain and fear of COVID-19.

Forty-six per cent of respondents who said they are very afraid of COVID-19 gained weight during the pandemic.

Forty-four cent of those who expressed that level of fear said they have been exercising less than they did before the pandemic and about 46 per cent said they were eating more than usual.

The online survey of 1,516 Canadians was conducted Oct. 29-31 and cannot be assigned a margin of error because internet-based polls are not considered random samples.

What we are watching in the U.S. …

The U.S. General Services Administration has ascertained that president-elect Joe Biden is the “apparent winner” of the Nov. 3 election.

President Donald Trump, who had refused to concede the election, said Monday that he is directing his team to co-operate on the transition but is vowing to keep up the fight.

The move clears the way for the start of the transition from Trump’s administration and allows Biden to co-ordinate with federal agencies on plans for taking over on Jan. 20.

An official said Administrator Emily Murphy made the determination after Trump efforts to subvert the vote failed across battleground states, most recently in Michigan, which certified Biden’s victory Monday.

And today, Biden is preparing to formally announce his national security team to the nation.

Those being introduced during an afternoon event are among Obama administration alumni whose roles in the upcoming administration signal Biden’s shift away from the Trump administration’s “America First” policies.

The picks include former Secretary of State John Kerry to take the lead on combating climate change. Outside the realm of national security and foreign policy, Biden is expected to choose former Fed chair Janet Yellen as the first woman to serve as treasury secretary.

What we are watching in the rest of the world …

China’s latest trip to the moon is another milestone in the Asian powerhouse’s slow but steady ascent to the stars.

China became the third country to put a person into orbit a generation ago and the first to land on the far side of the moon in 2019.

The Chang’e 5 mission, launched today, will be the first to bring back moon rocks and debris since a Soviet mission in 1976.

Future ambitions include a permanent space station and putting people back on the moon more than 50 years after the U.S. did.

On this day in 2002 …

Quebec Premier Bernard Landry announced that the May 24th Quebec holiday, “La fete de Dollard,” would henceforth be known as “La Journee nationale des Patriotes.” The name was changed to honour the movement that contributed to the Rebellions of 1837-38 in Lower Canada and became an early symbol of French-Canadian nationalism.

In entertainment …

Anne Murray wasn’t sure her singing voice was still intact until a few months ago.

The famed Canadian crooner had left her most-cherished instrument largely unchecked while in retirement, aside from belting out a song here and there while doing household chores.

But last summer, she decided to dust off her guitar to see whether her trademark lush alto voice could still carry a tune.

Murray says she performed a few of her old songs “just for the fun of it,” and was pleased to learn her famous pipes are still humming.

The winner of 24 Junos and four Grammys swore off recording new music more than a decade ago, but she recently compiled several of her classic tracks for a new holiday album.

“The Ultimate Christmas Collection” brings together 22 songs pulled from Murray’s various Christmas albums, including “Joy to the World, “Blue Christmas” and “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” with Michael Buble.

ICYMI …

A Quebec municipality that had planned to cull about 15 white-tailed deer in the coming days relented late Monday amid pressure on officials to relocate the animals.

Longueuil Mayor Sylvie Parent said in a statement the threat of people intervening or attempting to thwart the cull has forced the city to consider other options.

Parent noted the plan to capture and slaughter the deer, approved by Quebec’s Forests, Wildlife and Parks Department, was supported by a “broad consensus within the scientific community.”

But given the circumstances, she’s asking the city’s top civil servant to come up with a plan to move the deer from Michel-Chartrand Park to a sanctuary authorized by provincial officials.

Parent’s announcement came hours after an animal rescue group and a lawyer who champions animal rights urged the Montreal-area city to reconsider its plan to kill half the white-tailed deer in the park and donate the meat to a food bank.

The organization, Sauvetage Animal Rescue, along with well-known Montreal lawyer Anne-France Goldwater, had urged Parent to consider its own plan to relocate the animals to a sanctuary, free of charge.

Ultimately, the city relented but Parent said the deer situation would need to be resolved quickly.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2020

The Canadian Press

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