ShareThis Page
Pennsylvania

Texas workers hope to cap blown out Marcellus gas well

| Thursday, April 21, 2011

Workers from a Texas well control company plan this afternoon to start capping a blown-out natural gas well in Bradford County by shoving ground up rubber, plastic and heavy mud into it, state environmental officials said.

"The focus is to get this well permanently killed. That is the objective at this time," said Dan Spadoni, a spokesman for the Department of Environmental Protection.

The well in LeRoy exploded late Tuesday and still is seeping contaminated water, which vacuum trucks are collecting so it does not get into nearby waterways, Spadoni said.

Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake Energy Corp., the natural gas company that owns the well, blames equipment failure for causing the blowout. Drilling fluids spewed out of the well bore, escaped containment, crossed over farm fields and went into a stream.

The DEP is testing water from nearby wells but so far has no test results, Spadoni said.

The company said initial testing found little impact on local waterways from the spill of thousands of gallons of drilling fluids from the well, located in a rural area about 25 miles from the New York State border.

The company said early today that crews built a containment system to divert tainted water away from Towanda Creek.

One family who lives nearby was temporarily relocated until the well is brought under control. Other families who were asked to evacuate have returned to their homes. No injuries have been reported.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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.

click me