Gushers are signs of failures — not successes.
We vicariously enjoy movie scenes when a well gushes oil and showers characters such as those portrayed by James Dean in “Giant” and Daniel Day-Lewis in “There will be Blood.” Under authentic settings, gushers often were viewed from a distance (Figure 1). However, to oilmen, a gusher is a dramatic sign of failure with an accompanying loss of valuable oil, expensive equipment, and — in many instances — a loss of roustabouts.
Many formations contain gases, oil, and water under high pressure and these start flowing, or blow out, when or after a well has been drilled through the formation. Blowouts of water are artesian wells and blowouts of oil are gushers.