A Washington Gas Light Co. subsidiary has made two more major natural gas discoveries in Oklahoma, gas company officials confirmed yesterday.
One of the new wells came in exactly as predicted, was controlled without incident, and is expected to begin producing about $175,000 worth of gas a day by today or tomorrow.
The other well blew out unexpectedly early last Friday morning and vast amounts of gas are being burned while crews work to control the flow.
Washington Gas did not announce the new finds, but word spread through the investment community and WGL stock jumped $1 a share, closing at 41 3/4.
The two new wells are within a few miles of where the Washington Gas subsidiary, Crab Run Gas Co., struck a massive gas gusher last January at a well called Tom Cat No. 1.
The price of Washington Gas stock jumped from $18.50 to $40 after the Tom Cat find, which for a time was spewing out gas at a rate of 100 million cubic feet a day.
The Tom Cat gas came out under such intense pressure that it could not be controlled, forcing drillers to abandon the hole and begin drilling another a few hundred feet away.
Washington Gas owns 19 percent of Tom Cat and has a 9.6 percent interest in one of the new finds, called Kardokus, and a 21.4 percent share in the other, known as Codi.
The new wells could produce a windfall for Washington Gas stockholders, but should have no impact on the gas bills of the company's customers, because the wells were drilled with stockholders' money rather than financed from the company's gas sales.
The Codi well, about five miles southwest of Tom Cat, blew out in the early hours of Friday morning after hitting gas at a depth of about 14,000 feet, said a spokesman for Excalibur Oil Co. of Tulsa. Excalibur is drilling the well for Crab Run and several other partners.
Like Tom Cat, the Codi well is producing gas under such intense pressure that it is difficult to control, the Excalibur official said. He said the gas was flowing at a rate of60 million feet a day, but warned that "we could have a $3 million or $4 million disaster on our hands if we can't get it under control."
"The real news is up at Kardokus," he said, because that well, instead of blowing out unexpectedly, was brought under control without incident and is ready to sell gas.
The Kardokus well, a mile northwest of Tom Cat, struck gas at a depth of 16,353 feet and is expected to begin commercial production today, said a spokesman for its driller, Ports of Call Oil Co. of Oklahoma City.
The well is yielding gas at the rate of 27 million cubic feet a day. Because the well is deeper than 15,000 feet, the gas coming it is exempt from federal natural gas price controls. That means that instead of the regulated price of about $2.75 per thousand cubic feet, gas from Kardokus can be sold at the unregulated price of about $6.50 a thousand. At that price, a day's output of 27 million feet of gas would be worth $175,000.
Besides the two new finds and the second hole being drilled at Tom Cat, Washington Gas has interests in five other wells in the same area.