Drilling for Water, Drilling for Life

In January MSI board member, Butch Wilson, and a contractor friend, Bob Adams, traveled to Matagalpa, Nicaragua with new well drilling equipment purchased for Mike Silva International.

The main components of this new well drilling system from www.howtodrillawell.com fits in a suitcase, making it very easy to transport. When the team reaches a well drilling site they purchase the other parts need to complete the well – pipes, sleeves, etc. – and rent a compressor to run the drill.

The equipment is used all over the world to drill wells in areas of mostly dirt.

It works like this: a small but powerful air-powered drill is attached to the end of a length of pipe. The drill turns a specially designed drill bit which cuts the hole. Simple enough, right? Now comes the cool part. The exhaust from the air tool is ejected up the back side of the drill, and up the pipe. This creates a vacuum at the back of the drill, which sucks water into the pipe. This water is then blown up the pipe and out on the ground, which in turn creates a new vacuum, which sucks in water, which gets pumped out… and voila! We have a pumping system to remove tailings from our well! How to drill a well

Unfortunately, the site in Nicaragua was SOLID GRANITE! We had to abandon the site. Instead we are working on improving existing wells. Where currently there are only hand pumps and the water comes out as a trickle, we are putting in electric pumps with large storage tanks in each well area that will allow the villagers to get water whenever they need it. We are also teaching the villagers how to test and add chlorine to the tanks to make sure the water is clean.

In the past MSI has brought in containers of food and clothing to give away before a festival. This was costly and time consuming, not to mention that it quickly disappeared and had a short-term impact. When the discussion of what projects would have lasting benefit began, the conversation quickly turned to wells. Clean water has a lasting impact on the areas we visit.

Our service in an area before a festival really helps to open doors. When approaching the powers-that-be in a potential festival city and telling them that you plan to distribute food and clothing or build wells, they have been tripping over themselves to help us. We’ve seen them bend over backwards to provide police assistance, and permission to use meeting space and festival grounds.

In between festivals our Latin team will be using the equipment to drill wells in their home areas. Arqui Zapata, from Honduras, will take the equipment home after the festival in Matagalpa and begin drilling wells in areas that do not have access to clean water and for agricultural uses. When he’s finished Heriberto from Nicaragua will use it to drill wells in his coastal home area. Then in November it will be used to drill wells before our festival in El Salvador.

 

 

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