DOMESTIC OIL and gas rig count up 5 to 1,217

Saturday, May 5th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

HOUSTON (AP) _ The number of rigs actively exploring for oil and natural gas in the United States was up by five to 1,217.

Of the rigs running nationwide, 971 were exploring for gas, 244 were looking for oil and two were listed as miscellaneous, Houston-based Baker Hughes Inc. reported Friday.

A year ago, the rig count was at 833.

Baker Hughes has kept track of the count since 1944. The tally peaked at 4,530 on Dec. 28, 1981, during the height of the oil boom, but set several record lows in 1999, bottoming out at 488 on April 23, 1999.

Of the major oil- and gas-producing states, Louisiana gained six rigs, Wyoming three, Texas 10 and California one. Alaska lost one, and New Mexico lost six. The count in Oklahoma was unchanged.