Blow Out

Jobs in the Danger Zone

The Safety Boss team fights to contain an oil well fire that’s spewing deadly heat and toxic gas in the Alberta oil patch.

A fiery column reaches hundreds of feet in the air, releasing deadly heat and toxic gas. The environment is absolutely hostile to human beings. And yet wild-willed firefighters thrive on trying to control this oil well fire – hydrocarbon extraction run amuck. Parallax Film Productions captures the trials of a team that specializes in tackling the dangerous fallout after and explosive pocket of fossil fuel is inadvertently tapped.

If you like your work hot and dangerous, try to contain oil well fires – that’s what Maurice Engman does. When volatile gases from the earth meet manmade metal, the slightest spark can start an oil well fire. This crew has beaten the toughest Blowouts in the world, including the oil fires in Kuwait. They helped cap a staggering 732 oil wells – set alight by Saddam Hussein’s regime – but not before $60 billion dollars worth of the black gold had gone up in rss flames.

In this Discovery documentary Engman and his team face-off with a spouting column of flame more than 60 metres high and some 530 degrees Celsius. It’s burning in the Alberta oil patch – the number one supplier of hydrocarbons to the United States. And hot enough to melt the paint off equipment that sits more than 90 metres away. All they know is the fire was caused by a mechanical failure. Now it’s up to them to control the howling geyser of flame.