West Newton Council approves seismic testing for natural gas — without trucks
An oil and gas services company received permission on Monday to install recorders in West Newton to collect seismic data from underground explosions to determine whether the land underneath the 1.1-square-mile borough contains pockets of natural gas.
West Newton Council gave McDonald Land Services LLC of Washington, Okla., the approval to place the battery-powered seismic recorders in the borough, as long as the company does not use vibrating trucks to test for the natural gas. The approval is contingent on the borough signing a contract with McDonald Land Services.
“As long as it keeps the seismic truck out, I can't see anything wrong with it,” Council President George Molovich said.
Randall T. Bridges, project manager for McDonald Land Services, which has been contracted by ION GX Technology of Houston, said the testing in West Newton is part of the company's overall plan to conduct the seismic testing in a 115-square-mile area, from the Greensburg area to the Youghiogheny River. He said they will begin in the Greensburg-Youngwood area and move south toward the river during the next 30 to 45 days.
The plan is to place 3-pound explosive charges 30 feet underground. A person might feel a “bump” one-quarter mile from the explosion, Bridges said.
It is unlikely that the explosive charges would be detonated within West Newton, because the explosions cannot occur within 300 feet of a building, structure or water well.
The seismic recording devices would be placed in a grassy area, just off the street or sidewalk, Bridges said. A small hole would be drilled in the ground to hold the seismometer. The company typically places 180 recording devices within a square mile, Bridges said. A line of seismic recorders would be placed 300 feet apart and 600 feet from the next line of recorders, Bridges said.
In other matters, the borough hired five part-time police officers, who will begin working in late spring or early summer, Chief Gary Indof said.
Timothy Farkas of West Newton was the first to be hired, and granted seniority over the other officers hired moments later.
Jennifer Kominsky was the second to be hired, followed by Andrew Jacobs, Phillip Musa and Zachary Gustafson.
Indof said the order in which the officers were hired by council was based on how well they did in the job interviews.
The hourly rates paid to the officers varies, depending on how many hours they work, Indof said.
Before hiring the officers, council accepted the resignation of Bryan Bobnar as a part-time police officer, effective April 14. Bobnar notified council he had been hired by California University of Pennsylvania's police department.
Joe Napsha is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-5252 or email@example.com.
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.
- Woman foils robbery attempt in Pleasant Unity
- Irwin class helps recovering addicts, families find peace through art
- New Geyer Choir hopes to hit high note at Scottdale theater
- Cancer fundraiser pays tribute to Donegal man
- Monessen man gets long prison term, then gets married
- Greensburg man, out on bond, ID’d in robbery
- Medical center ‘monstrosity’ near end in Jeannette
- Unity day care operator loses appeal of sentence
- 33 from Westmoreland County inducted into state’s Voter Hall of Fame
- Unity prowling suspect sought
- Push for budget, Southmoreland board president urges residents