To teach drilling, Piglet and I usually work as a team. I instruct the students while Piglet drills the first well. In this case, however, the principals wanted the drill crew to operate the rig from the start. This generally isn't a good practice.
Once the rig was set up on a new drill site, the drill crew commenced drilling. Piglet instructed the crew through an interpreter. This again is very inconvenient as the interpreter isn't familiar with drilling and doesn't usually know what is important and what is not. We try to keep the interpretation very basic, teach by example and don't sweat the small stuff.
In this case, the driller student was older than Piglet and been drilling in Haiti for some 38 years. This, again, usually is not a good practice. It's just like trying to teach someone to drive a vehicle who has been driving his own way for years. The old saying often holds true: You can't teach an old dog new tricks.
The drill crew drilled the first well to about 200 feet and attempted to set the 4-inch casing and well screen in a 6 1⁄4-inch hole. By Piglet's interpretation of the cuttings samples, it wasn't a good water-bearing formation. However, the experienced Haitian driller was determined to set the casing. But due to the hole being too small and the clay swelling, the casing wouldn't go to the bottom. From there on, things just deteriorated. It didn't turn out to be a good well. The next two wells turned out about the same.
Piglet was disappointed because all of these people mean well and became his friends. In almost 21 days, three holes were drilled. The last one - almost 300 feet deep - supplied about 10 gallons per minute. Piglet felt it should have produced in excess of 60 gallons to 80 gallons per minute.
Before leaving Haiti, the drill students gave Piglet a nice party to thank him for his assistance and ask him to return soon to assist further with the drilling. Both Piglet and myself hope that we are asked to return to Papaye, Haiti to work with them further. We want their program to be successful.
Update: On September 25th Mironda Heston (age 24) passed away. Mironda was our interpreter and well thought of by everyone. She had been bitten by a mosquito in Haiti and contacted Dengue Fever. Mironda was from Mineral, Ill. A medical clinic that Mironda helped open in Papaye has been named in her honor, The Mironda Heston Medical Clinic. We are told that everyone in the village is walking with their heads down, which is how Haitians show their mourning.
Notice: Do you want to become a certified driller, pump installer or Master Ground Water Certified? If so, attend the NGWA convention in Las Vegas where the instructors will be MGWCs (the Green Jackets) and Past Presidents (the Purple Jackets) will be presenting a full-day workshop to assist applicants to become certified. This course will cover general information regarding the procedures of well drilling, and will go over terms used in well drilling that often are on well drill and pump installation certification exams.