Thoughts about the rest of the people who make The Marcellus Shale Play a great place to live and work.
I have been chasing the money and projects in various types of Energy from Coal through Nuclear and settling on Gas & Oil for the last 35 years, as a Quality Assurance Specialist, specializing in Tubulars, Static Equipment, and Rotating Equipment. If you are like a lot of people, you ask me, what kind of insurance do I sell. Well, the best way to describe what I do is thus; I do my best to assure that the product you ordered from a Manufacturer or Vendor is manufactured to the stringent specifications you, your Design Engineers have required, Organizations like API & ASME Standards, and/or within the parameters of a P. O.
This brings me to the staff behind the scenes that make this business happen and is often overlooked by the Media and The Populace. You will find the Concept Engineer, Design Engineer, Facilities Manager, Materials Manager, Quality Manager, Inspectors, Auditors, Fitters, Welders, and Painters. There are many more, but usually we only see the faces of The Petroleum Engineer, Executives, Roustabouts, and Roughnecks, all part of the very important roster of people needed to make and keep a well productive. When a play or assignment comes into planning, we are called from many places around the world and many different projects that have wound down, to land on our feet and get the new project up and running. In my case, as an Independent 3rd Party Quality Specialist, I visit Vendors, discriminately watching the Welders, Technicians, and Inspectors performing their duties. Specialists such as I watch for the small tweaks and nuances used in making the Factory Acceptance Test, Hydrostatic Test, NDT, and even Paint Tests used, to achieve the end result. Based on my observations and the data retrieved from the test, I either Accept or Reject the product and the Vendor then makes the necessary changes to make it compliant if I do not accept the test results.
In consideration of the fact, that we, the usually silent ones, sometimes work 100 hour weeks, miss out on family & local events, and seldom take the time to say no, we are stunned at the Naysayers amongst us who disdain our efforts without even knowing all of the facts. Doing the job we love with Safety, Quality, & Integrity in mind, most of my peers don’t know how to respond and stay silent. Be assured, we don’t want a faulty pipeline in our backyards, water well contaminated, or a Gas Well or Holding Tank catch on fire. Somewhere and sometimes a friend is involved and gets killed or seriously hurt.
We are all human and can’t give 100%, not even any machine can do that, but we do care.
With everything we do, we MUST have provenance or the end is not accepted, we research and study before we take on an assignment and continue throughout its duration.
I worked on a Shell Appalachia Project last year at a remote vendor and was pleased with Shell’s insistence on Quality and Safety, something I stressed daily to the Vendor. Since the E&Ps don’t manufacture or do the mundane tasks and the Equipment & Office Tasks are all needed to make a Facility successful, we rely on both and small vendors around The Marcellus like Hetrick Manufacturing, Harliss Specialties, Mountaineer Fabricating, Gardner Denver Nash, USS Tubulars, TMK-IPSCO, Dura-Bond, Siemens, Johnson Control, NuWeld, Nadine Manufacturing, RNDT, Wright Consulting, Norwin Manufacturing, New Pig, Grace Automation, and the 10s of others to build for us. Auditing these Shops, leading Pre-Production & Pre-Inspection Meetings, Witnessing Inspections, leading Quality Meetings, Expediting, and Tending to Logistics, we do our part to make it happen.
And we have (2) other groups who perform critical functions in bringing a new project to the light of day and keeping it running.
The Health, Safety, and Environmental Professionals like Brian Huckabee, Sandi Bell, Bob Houston, Justin Johnston, Brian Oram, and all of the others who concentrate in this important sector and keep us going back home at the end of work every day and teach us to protect our Natural Resources, and are more of the unrecognized who work to make a project successful
The Editorial Staffs like Ray at FrackMarkets, Tom & Nicole at Energy In Depth, Tracy & Kathy at Shale Stuff, the Staff at Marcellus Shale Coalition, and all of the others in The Information and Public Relations endeavors who comb the news and internet to keep us up to date on the changes we are mandated to know about & implement.
Together, all of these firms and the 100’s of others who provide goods and services employ thousands of people with good & solid well-paying jobs.
Through the course of my work days, I get emails and telephone calls from companies here in the USA and abroad (As far away as Australia, China, & Malaysia) who desire to have a footprint in The Marcellus, either as distributer/sales or manufacturing. Possibilities beyond my ken abound with all of this additional interest.
Altogether, it takes about 150 people with different skills to bring a well on line and keep it safe and productive. And all of these jobs in my chosen field, pay more than the median, and carry a lot of Cachet, Dignity and Self Respect for doing an important job well.
Of course, like often happens we are asked to go beyond the perceived job scope and even get into sourcing of parts and procurement, something I have consolidated into my business. The people we meet, the cultures we live in, the vendors we work with, and the freedom of individuality make us, the behind the scenes types, who we are.
Seriously remember that we want a stress free economic future for our Children & Grandchildren, Accurate Science, not Hysteria and Innuendoes, a sound Energy Policy utilizing all of the Realistic Forms we have, Energy Independence, but most of all a Safe & Sound energy Infrastructure. My family & neighbors, here in The NE USA, I ask, understand us, talk to us in a non-emotional way, do your research, and then make your decisions. Please do not rely on others to tell you “The Truth”. Together we can achieve any and all of the goals Sound Natural Gas Production & Use is offering.
Together, all of us public and behind the scenes work daily to insure Safety, Quality, & Integrity at the Well Pad, work hard to put the USA back on the track to Energy Security, get the Worker home safely, and provide for a Bright Economic Future for Future Generations.
It is great to be back home near the beautiful Allegheny Mountains after years of travel and being involved in these exciting times.
With all respect, I thank you for hearing me out.
Future Articles will tell tales of the Characters that I have met, the Projects that I have worked on, and fond thoughts of the Lands & Cultures I have visited or worked with.
Disclaimer: Even though I have mentioned a few of the many companies I have had the pleasure to work with through the years, let it be understood that I have no financial interests in any of them and do not endorse them in this article.
© Donald L. Crusan 25-October-2012
Don “Luigi” Crusan, Quality Consultant & Owner: http://www.marcellusindependenttechnicalsolutions.com/