By PennEnergy Editorial Staff
© 2014: PennWell Corporation
Oil and gas operations often function on continuous, 24-hour schedules, while enduring both natural elements and influence from unexpected factors. Monitoring these processes can be vital to keeping things operating smoothly, and identifying causes and factors when things go awry.
One company is making a name through thorough monitoring with reliable backup and customizable results. Well Checked offers a service touted by users, supported by insurers, and featuring some of the latest technological monitoring advances.
Well Checked President Bob Haefner worked with Sequoyah Technologies before joining Well Checked. Handling software development for SCADA companies, Haefner found customers often had requests that went beyond what SCADA could accommodate.
“Oilfield clients were constantly making requests for video where they could validate what was happening at their sites,” Haefner said. “There are some constant video streaming products out there, but they are expensive and don’t show users what they need to see as opposed to flooding them with constant video that is impossible to track, especially across large numbers of sites.”
At the same time, Mike Haines, a business associate of Haefner, was encountering issues common to pumpers.
“Having a background in systems automation, control systems and networking, Mike quickly realized that a pumper’s job, and the production/operators, could really use video to their remote well sites,” said Haefner. “This would enable more efficient scheduling of the pumper’s daily activities, view sites when a pumper cannot be on site, monitor unwanted activity in order to assist with loss prevention, environmental risks and reduce theft while also greatly reducing miles driven by the pumpers and operators.”
Haines tapped brother Hank, Steven Richardson, and Bob Haefner to form a new company to address these issues, Well Checked. The company aims to provide reliable monitoring that meets the needs of operators.
“In addition to assisting with day to day production and operation activities such as scheduling of personnel and vendor activities as required to maintain efficient E&P activity,” said Haefner, “our systems assist our clients in securing their locations from unwanted activity, becoming environmentally safe and operational productive. Theft and unwanted third party activity has become a huge issue in the industry as has personnel safety and adherence to risk and loss prevention guidelines and regulations.”
According to Haefner, this attention to the real world needs of well sites has already attracted the attention insurance providers specializing in the oil and gas sector.
“Major insurance providers have already agreed to reduce premiums for their clients who install our systems in order to reduce the potential risks from these occurrences and also reducing risks to the environment. Well Checked Monitoring Systems assist our clients in becoming more Safe, Secure and Productive.”
One reason for the support from insurance providers is the versatility of the Well Checked system. For instance, the system already supports all major browsers and smart phones, tablets, laptops, and desktop computer. And although the system has a robust selection of features, even traditional monitoring features like zoom are more robust with a Well Checked system.
“The tremendous zoom capability of our systems allows our cameras to cover considerably large areas of the well site efficiently,” says Haefner, “while still enabling them to zoom in with clarity required to get clear views of gauges and meter readings, license plates and faces for review by our clients.”
But Haefner knows all the features in the world aren’t worth it to clients if the package doesn’t come at a competitive price.
“At a cost of about 68 cents an hour to continually monitor and assist in the production and protection of our client sites, our end-to-end remote video, sensor-based monitoring, recording and alerting systems are applicable to the majority of oil and gas well sites in order to operate Safely, Securely and Productively.”
For more information on Well Checked, visit the company website, and be sure to check out some user testimony below.
“I use the Well Check Monitoring System to verify the status of my wells and battery. Since the cameras are solar powered, often when I lose power, I can use the cameras to verify that my wells are online even when my SCADA is down. I also use Well Checked to document down times on pumping units that are not on my SCADA system. I can also verify from the battery when the flare is burning or if it is not burning when it’s supposed to be. Well Checked has helped us determine the company responsible for accidently knocking out power to some of our wells. I have recently used Well Checked to determine at what time a spill occurred at one of my batteries and the system gave me a good idea as to how the spill occurred.”
– Andrews, Texas Client
“Had 4 sites with monthly theft and vandalism issues. Since installing our systems all of these issues have ceased and they have subsequently continued to expand their sites with us as they have additionally benefited from identifying numerous safety, security, third party vendor and operational issues.”
– Tulsa, Oklahoma Client