Sara Akbar, development specialist for the Kuwait Oil Company, makes a cell phone call before joining firefighters from the companies (KWWK: Kuwait Wild Well Killers) as they prepare to extinguish the first oil well fire in Iraq's Rumaila Oil field. After dousing the flames with high pressure water hoses, they sealed the spurting well of gas and oil with drilling mud using what is called a "stinger," a tapered pipe on the end of a long steel boom controlled by a bulldozer. Drilling mud, under high pressure, is pumped through the stinger into the well, stopping the flow of oil and gas. The Rumaila oil field is one of Iraq's biggest with five billion barrels in reserve. The burning wells in the Rumaila Field were ignited by retreating Iraqi troops when the US and UK invasion began in March 2003. Rumaila is also spelled Rumeilah.
- ©Peter Menzel, www.menzelphoto.com
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