The assumption of "water to the surface" also may produce an underground blowout. However, it is assumed that preparations can be made to pump water into the well before running out of mud. This does not account for drillpipe failure or pumping equipment failure. The problem of drillpipe kicks can be minimized by running a float. For this case, the pump pressure required is about 7800 psi. Even cementing equipment is not rated for extended service at this pressure; therefore, considerable redundancy is mandatory. If the pumping equipment fails, the casing will burst if not designed for the gas to surface load, leaving a blowout.
The assumption of a kick also represents an underground blowout if the kick exceeds the available kick tolerance (as is the case here). The shoe is broken down and the permeable gas zone will flow if the fracture pressure at the shoe is below formation pressure in the permeable zone. This does not account for drillpipe failure, pumping equipment failure or running out of mud. A float minimizes the risk from drillpipe kicks. There is usually sufficient pumping equipment redundancy for pumping mud at the low pressures and rates required.
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