Truck crash causes fracking water, diesel spill into Chartiers Creek
State environmental officials don't believe a tanker spill early Monday in Washington County polluted Chartiers Creek.
Authorities confined almost all of the 1,300 gallons of diesel fuel and 400 gallons of fracking wastewater spilled from a three-tanker crash on Route 18 in Canton to the shoulder of the road and storm sewer, said Department of Environmental Protection spokesman John Poister.
“There is no indication of any negative environmental impact,” Poister said, noting authorities spotted no signs such as dead fish or oil sheens on the creek.
Carnegie-based Weavertown Environmental Group put out floating booms to catch any diesel fuel and fracking wastewater that reached the creek. Water samples were sent for testing, Poister said. The DEP intends to remove roadside dirt that soaked up diesel, he said.
A tanker hauling the fuel slammed into two tankers carrying frackwater that were stopped at a red light at Oak Grove Road and North Hewitt Avenue about 3 a.m. All three trucks overturned. That area of Route 18 remained closed until late Monday afternoon.
Coen Zappi Oil & Gas Co. of Washington was shipping the diesel, Poister said.
A company official who would not identify himself declined to comment and referred questions to Washington-based 1923 Transportation, which he said owns and operated the tanker.
No one returned a phone message left for 1923 Transportation.
Somerset-based Highland Environmental LLC did not return calls. It owns the tankers that were carrying the frackwater for Cecil-based Range Resources from one of the energy company's drilling sites to another, Poister said.
Although natural gas drilling activity in Pennsylvania continues to grow, any threat posed by trucks hauling fracking wastewater is declining, Marcellus Shale Coalition spokesman Travis Windle said.
In recent years, drillers such as Range have begun recycling and reusing more than 90 percent of fracking wastewater, often transporting it to and from centrally located impoundments via permanent and temporary water lines, Windle said.
Range spokesman Matt Pitzarella said such efforts resulted in 250,000 fewer truck trips across Pennsylvania in 2012. He could not estimate how many trucks travel that part of Washington County for Range each day.
Tom Fontaine is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-320-7847 or email@example.com. Staff writer Jason Cato contributed to this report.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Shale oil, gas finds put Mon Valley on path to renaissance, leaders say
- Officer violated gun rights during traffic stop, motorist claims
- Ex-Washington County inmate denied dental care awarded $100K