Oil demand brings back furloughed workers


WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Oil prices have spiked. While this could mean high costs for some businesses and consumers, it’s welcomed news for the oil industry.

Dennis Saloga is an oil field worker in southwest Kansas. 

“It’s been something I’ve done all my life. I’m 54 years old now, and I started at 18 years old doing this and my dad did it before me you know I’ve grown up with this,” said Saloga. 

Saloga was furloughed for four months in October, making it hard to pay the bills after going more than 100 days without unemployment checks. 

“It’s been very, very, very tough on the people that are out there,” said Saloga. 

Now he is back, getting the call to return to work earlier this month. 

“I’m just thankful I am back working,” said Dennis Saloga. 

President of Trans-Pacific Oil Corporation Alan Banta said the price for oil is going up in Kansas because more people are traveling. 

“We’re back to almost where we were last January, pre-pandemic,” said Banta. 

He said this could be good news for workers like Saloga, however, a hiring spree maybe a few months away. 

“We had a price crash, it got down in May to I think $15 a barrel. Today we’re back up to about 47, plus a barrel,” said Banta. “As we drill again, we can hire more people and start to expand our, our operations, and I personally feel like that could happen by summertime, but it’s going to be dependent on how fast the economy reopens.”

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