On April 21, 2015 3:44 pm
A little under a year and a half ago, Greg Cook and his wife Megan returned from South Carolina to his hometown of St. Clairsville and started Mustang Oilfield Services LLC, an oilfield trucking company working with the shale oil and gas industries in Ohio, W. Va. and Pa. The company started with four water trucks, about 10 employees, and a mission statement refreshing to the ears of those reluctant of the industry: promote job growth in Belmont County and keep it local.
“One hundred percent of our employees are local. We have not brought in anybody from out-of-town, which is a common complaint amongst some segments of the industry. We were born and raised in the area and this is our way to bring some jobs here,” said Greg Cook, the CEO and Owner of Mustang Oilfield Services.
Megan Cook, Director of Marketing, said that the passion runs deep.
“We got into the industry because, yes, strike the iron when it’s hot, but there’s a huge, bigger picture of why companies like us do what we do and it’s to secure American energy stability for our children. That’s why we are so passionate about what we do,” Megan Cook said.
According to Greg Cook, Mustang supplies energy companies with water supplies, hauling freshwater to a well site for the various phases of drilling and hydraulic fracturing and hauling the flow back water off the site. The water is obtained from various water sources, such as lakes, rivers, municipal supplies and groundwater.
“Sometimes it is our job to find one or more freshwater sources, while at other times the energy company will dictate the water source. This also pertains to disposal locations for the flow back water as well,” Greg Cook said.
Greg Cook said one horizontal shale gas well usually exhausts around six million gallons of water in the various stages from drilling to hydraulic fracturing.
In addition to water, Mustang hauls equipment, rig mats, containment fixtures, frac tanks, pumps, drill rigs and super sacks of pellets and wood chips.
“We can haul just about anything an operator needs on a pad,” Greg Cook said.
According to Chase McCarthy, Director of Business Development, hydraulic fracturing has been utilized for 68 years, despite the perception that it’s new, but has seen advancements in technology in more recent times. The influx of the industry in the Belmont County area brought in workers from out-of-town because a lot of local workers weren’t properly trained to do the job, but that’s changing.
Various institutes, such as Ohio State, Marietta College, Ohio University Eastern, Belmont College and Zane State have put together programs to get the workforce trained and knowledgeable in the industry.
Mustang hired a part-time summer 2015 intern from Marietta College.
“They have a fantastic Petroleum Engineering program there. It’s nice to have local involvement on many levels throughout the company and industry,” McCarthy said.
In present day, Mustang is up to 20 water trucks, five tractors and about 60 employees, and ever-expanding.
Megan Cook said the company is also currently hiring truck drivers.
“We could probably add about another 20 truck driver spots tomorrow,” Megan Cook said.
The desired candidate will have a CDL license. Oilfield experience is preferred, but not absolutely required. The willingness and ability to work are especially essential, as the job entails an average of 60-70 hours per week with five or six 12-hour shifts.
And the job prospects look promising.
“We have a fantastic group of employees right now all across the board that has allowed us to grow in the way that we have and the way that we will. It’s certainly an industry that’s here to stay for a lot of years. I see several decades ahead of us in this industry in this area, so it’s a great area to be in right now and a great career path for anybody,” Greg Cook said.