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Kern County Gas Well Fire Poses Containment Challenge

November 25, 1998| From Associated Press

LOST HILLS, Calif. — A huge blaze at a natural gas well may burn for at least a week before experts can extinguish the flames.

The gas well erupted in flames 150 feet high on Monday, destroying drilling equipment worth millions of dollars. No one was injured.

More than 10 people were working on the drill rig owned by Nabors Drilling in Bakersfield when the well caught fire in a remote area, Kern County Fire Department engineer Vern Brothers said Tuesday.

A special crew from Houston was called to handle the blaze. Boots and Coots International was one of the companies that extinguished oil rig fires in Kuwait after the Gulf War, authorities said.

The crew will have to assess damage to the well and well head before attempting to put out the flames, a process that could take at least a week, Boots and Coots officials said.

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