Managing ‘snaky’ situations in West Texas

Western Diamondback Rattlesnake
A western diamondback rattlesnake pictured at one of Trinidad’s West Texas rig sites

Hey, we get it. Being tough is an unwritten roughneck prerequisite, so you’re not about to get scared off by a snake or two on the lease.

Right….

To all those who have jumped out of their skin after being startled by a rattlesnake hiding under rig matting – your secret’s safe with us.

Working around venomous snakes is a reality West Texas rig hands have to be prepared for.

“Western diamondbacks, coral snakes, tarantulas, scorpions…you name ‘em, we’ve got ‘em in West Texas,” said Marco Rocha, our HSE supervisor based out of Midland, Texas.

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Rig 134 earns its fifth spot on Pioneer’s ‘Rig Team of the Quarter’ trophy

Dustin Brown, Drilling Superintendent; Gary Malmay, Driller; Brandon Hobbs, Rig Manager

If you are going to do something, do it to the best of your ability.

That mindset has been a defining one for Chad Britt throughout his career. Born into a long line of roughnecks, the Louisiana native is one of the Rig Managers on Rig 134, a trophy-clad triple in our U.S. fleet with a track record of accomplishment.

“I’ve always taught my crews to strive for their very best,” said Chad.

“Rig 134 isn’t gunning for awards, we just want to be a benefit to Trinidad and do our jobs to the highest standard.”

As it turns out, when you are passionate about doing a great job, awards and recognition tend to follow. Continue reading

5 reasons you’ll want to work on a Trinidad rig

Trinidad Drilling Rig 39
Trinidad Rig 39, a 1,500 HP AC Walking Triple

Mike Kerik has worked for a few drilling contractors over his 18-year career in the Canadian oil patch.

After spending the last 12 years in Trinidad teal, he’s figured out what makes us stand out – both as a contractor and as an employer. According to Mike, sticking with us has been a bit of a no-brainer.

“High-performance people, modern iron, huge safety records; you name it, Trinidad’s got it,” said Rig 39’s Rig Manager.

Read on as Mike shares five reasons you’ll want to work on a Trinidad rig.

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Trinidad Drilling moving system

Inside Trinidad’s 2017 rig upgrade program: Part two

A couple of weeks ago, we wrote a blog post about the rig upgrades we have underway to tackle west Texas’ long lateral wells. In addition to increasing mud pump capabilities, adding generators, and expanding racking capacities, we’re also modifying our rigs to drill more efficiently in response to low commodity prices.

Here are a few of the ways we’re adapting some of our top-performing US rig fleet to drill deeper…cheaper. Continue reading

Trinidad Rig 123 Pithand Bennie McFerran

5 questions with Pithand, Bennie McFerran, on the safest rig in Trinidad’s fleet

Bennie McFerran is one of the newest guys on Trinidad Rig 123, currently drilling in Reeves County, Texas. Admittedly a bit nervous to start with a new company in November of last year, McFerran’s nerves were quickly put aside when he found out the crew he was joining was coming up on eight years without a recordable incident.

“I’d heard Trinidad was a good company to work for and knew they had nice rigs, but I didn’t know how great the company was until I started. Safety records like this are something special,” said McFerran.

We caught up with the rig’s newest Pithand to find out what it’s like working on the safest rig in Trinidad’s fleet. Here’s what McFerran had to say. Continue reading

Trinidad Rig 57

Behind the scenes of a Trinidad rig move: Rig 57 heads south

If you’ve been following us on social media, you know our team’s been busy moving one of our Canadian rigs to Midland, Texas. Selected by the customer to make the 3,500 km (2,175 mile) trek because of its unique pad drilling capabilities, Rig 57 just made its debut in the Permian Basin. According to Baker Hughes, it joins half of the active oil rigs in the United States in this play.

Mega pad monster

The 1,500 HP Triple’s moving system is what really sets it apart from other rigs in west Texas. With advanced moving systems on both the center section (the derrick and substructure) and compound, Rig 57 can walk from well-to-well with flexibility and ease. Continue reading

Trinidad’s got grit: looking back on 2016

Grit /grit/: noun: courage and resolve; strength of character.

synonyms: courage, bravery, pluck, mettle, backbone, spirit, strength of character, strength of will, moral fiber, steel, nerve, fortitude, toughness, hardiness, resolve, resolution, determination, tenacity, perseverance, endurance

Despite the industry’s challenges in 2016, we dug in and demonstrated our grit. We just have that way about us. Our team was tested but continued moving forward, because no matter what, our people are dedicated to operational, safety and financial performance, and our equipment is designed to perform for our customers.

Read on as we celebrate the year past and join us in looking forward to the year ahead.

Click on graphics to enlarge Continue reading

How to stay busy during spring break-up in Canada

3 ways to stay busy during spring break-up in Canada

Drilling activity in western Canada is busiest during the winter months. From October to mid-March, cold temperatures freeze the ground enough for drilling companies to move rigs without damaging municipal roads.

Come April, as temperatures rise, the ground thaws, and road bans are put in place, a number of rigs are shut down and stacked for what the industry calls “spring break-up.” Typically lasting anywhere from six weeks to three months (depending on weather, activity levels, and the rig’s location), crews are laid off to wait out the thaw.

“Lots of hands look for temporary work during break-up, often picking up seasonal jobs like landscaping or farming,” explained Trisha Hennig, Field Services Manager in our Canadian division. “Others budget throughout the year and take the time off to travel.” Continue reading

Trinidad Drilling Rig 121

There are no re-dos when it comes to rig safety

Rig safety has come a long way over the last 30 years. Just ask John Meckert, Trinidad’s Vice President of HSE and QMS, whose years of experience in the industry have given him another level of respect for helping rig hands get home safely.

A professional engineer by trade, Meckert’s interest in safety began at the start of his career while working for Conoco, who at the time was owned by the industrial safety leader and STOP program founder, DuPont.

“Thirty years ago, if you looked at the past few decades’ safety statistics and safety culture, you couldn’t find a better company. I was fortunate to learn the ropes from them so early on.” Continue reading

Rig Profile: Trinidad Drilling Rig 100

This week on the blog, we’re introducing our new spin on an old favourite!

Rig 100 holds a special place in the hearts of those that have been with Trinidad since the beginning. Well-known as a 1,500 HP SCR Triple and the first rig in our US fleet, recent upgrades have taken the ten-year-old rig to a whole new level. Currently drilling in the Permian Basin, the new and improved 2,000 HP AC XL (extended lateral) Triple is aiming for depths it wasn’t capable of…until now.

Read on as Ronald Williams, lead engineer on Rig 100’s recent upgrade, explains why this old favourite has people talking.

Trinidad Drilling Rig 100 Continue reading