Mae Sot man digging for water finds gas well

Construction News Myanmar

A garage owner digging a deep well in a fruitless search for water has instead struck gas on his land in Tak’s Mae Sot district, near the Myanmar border.

Sanya Sanyasiri, 41, was shocked when steam began erupting from the 70 metre-deep hole, along with a smell reminiscent of gas.

Mr Sanya, owner of Sanyasiri car garage in tambon Mae Ku, said the water supply at his home was inadequate so he hired a contractor and labourers to dig a well. He hoped to tap into a source of artesian water.

The well had been dug to 70 metres and still there was not a single drop of water in it. His hopes faded  and he decided to stop digging, Thai media reported on Wednesday.

But when workers pulled up the drill from the hole, they were stunned to see steam and then gas gushing out of the ground. The contractor later installed a pipe, moistened with water, to reduce the gas pressure, but still it kept coming up, so they installed a valve to shut it off, with a pressure gauge.

News about the gas spread like wildfire, and officials arrived to inspect the discovery.

Banjong Sukreetha led a team from the Tak provincial industrial office to the site on Wednesday. Officials conducted tests on the gas and reported that trapped samples burned with a clear blue flame, the reports said.

The burning gas could boil water in five minutes and fry an egg faster than ordinary cooking gas.

Authorities asked Mr Sanya to move the gas pipeline, which was in the middle of his garage, to a safer area and clear the away the grass to prevent a possible fire.

Mr Banjong said officials had collected samples for further examination of its composition, but density checks showed it was probably methane.

He would report the find to the Energy Ministry so it could be properly surveyed and an estimate made of the amount of gas under the ground there.