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Opening the Health, Safety & Environment technical session on Tuesday afternoon, Steve Kropla, IADC group vice president – operations & accreditation, discussed the tools that IADC provides for companies to build a well control culture. WellCAP, the Well Control Accreditation Program, establishes core curriculum for well control training. It is industry-driven, developed by operators, contractors and service companies and designed for global application. It provides building blocks for well control competency through courses at several levels: introductory, fundamental, supervisory and the newest WellCAP PLUS.

IADC offers tools to build a well control culture

Since its implementation in 1995, the program has been constantly updated to accommodate industry needs, Mr Kropla said. For example, deepwater topics were incorporated into subsea guidelines in 2002, the coiled tubing curriculum was revised in 2006, and the snubbing curriculum is now under revision.

Signifying both the growing acceptance of WellCAP worldwide and the tremendous activity increase in the industry, 53,533 certificates have been issued in just 2006-2007. Altogether, more than 137,449 certificates have been issued to date. Operators such as Chevron, Oxy, Petrobras and PEMEX, as well as contractors such as Nabors, Transocean and Diamond Offshore, have adopted WellCAP as their internal well control standard.

Other recent developments in WellCAP include:

  • WellCAP killsheets. This project began in 2004, and industry feedback have resulted in a series of revisions. The Wait and Weight version of the killsheet is complete and available on IADC’s website. A draft of the bullheading version is available for review, and a Driller’s method version is being planned. 
  • Instructor qualifications. Due to concerns raised with the quality of new well control instructors, Mr Kropla said, required qualifications could get strengthened. Re-certification/qualification also has been proposed.
  • Introductory level retraining. Currently, retraining is required every five years, but the question has been raised as to whether that’s necessary. 
  • WellCAP PLUS. This advanced course was designed to encourage participation among multiple levels of decision-makers (drilling superintendents, operations engineers, rig superintendents, rig managers, toolpushers and drillers). It uses a facilitated learning approach to improve critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

More information about WellCAP and WellCAP Plus are available on IADC's website at www.iadc.org.

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