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Tom Wark

Tom Wark came off a farm, and was not surprised by the level of hard work associated with being a roughneck in the 1930s.

When Wark moved through Wainwright to Leduc in May of 1947, the area had no roads, no phones, and few lodgings. This was not a problem for him.

He ended up working on the infamous Atlantic #3 well, which blew wild for over six months in 1948. He was there from the day they lost control of the well, to the day when they finally killed it.

For six long and anxious months, the men who worked on Atlantic #3 hoped and prayed the spewing oil would not catch fire. In the meantime, they dumped grain, feathers, cement, and everything else they could lay hands on into the well to stop it.

Unfortunately, just a few days before the roughnecks successfully killed the well, the oil caught fire.

Wark and the others put out this inferno by pumping a water and copper sulphate solution into the well, before chasing that with about 20 000 litres of acid. Their efforts, along with the creation of two relief wells, finally succeeded in taming Atlantic #3.

 

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