No Fracking Way

Carrizo Oil & Gas Blowout Spin

by Dory Hippauf on March 17, 2013

carrizo-washington blowoutOn Wednesday, March 13, 2013, at approximately 6pm the Yarasavage 1H natural gas well began spewing its fracking cocktail.   The drillers, Carrizo Oil & Gas were at stage 23 of fracking.

Yarasavage 1H natural gas well is located approximately three miles northwest of Tunkhannock in Washington Township along Keiserville Road. (see maps at bottom)

The news headlines have characterized the blowout as an “incident”, “faulty”, “spill” and “malfunction”.  All very soft words convening a sense of something minor, and not much of concern.

carrizo google

The fracking chemicals gushing from the well is described as “salty, chemically treated wastewater”.  Three families were evacuated because officials were concerned that as the fluid in the well was released to the surface, gas would blow out behind it.    Colleen Connolly, DEP Spokesperson stated that because of a drill malfunction, flow-back fluid leaked onto a natural gas well pad.

Per news reports the “leak” amounted to 5,400 barrels, or 227,000 gallons, of the fluid was captured in tanks and trucked off site, Ms. Connolly said. Some of the fluid ran off the pad but crews built a temporary catch basin across the road to contain it, she said.

Natural Gas was also detected “leaking” as conditions worsened overnight.  The “leak” was flowing at approximately 800 gallons per minute.

From the same news story:  County EMA director Eugene Dziak said the public was not in any danger.

“We’ve been monitoring the air all night long,” he said. “There has been no release of gas to the atmosphere.”

DEP crews found no detections of volatile chemicals or methane in the air during a sweep of a mile-and-a-half-wide circle around the well. Officials also detected no or very low levels of radiation in the fluid that flowed out of the well, Ms. Connolly said.

Was there natural gas “leaking” or not?  And please define “very low levels of radiation”.   How much of a concern is this?

Numbers don’t add up.  The well “leaked” until early the following day, flowing at a rate of approximately 800 gallons per minute.    Using the figures cited in the news by DEP, about 227,000 gallons were “captured”.

227,000 / 800 = 283.75 minutes or 4.73 hours.  Yet, the “leak” took longer than 4.73 hours to control.   How much was not “contained” considering it took until the next day to stop it?

The “incident” is being blamed on a “faulty” flange at the well head according to the most current reports. Carrizo are very sorry about the “incident”.

DEP and Carrizo spokespeople continue to downplay the seriousness and long term hazards.    Carrizo has offered bottled water to nearby residents until testing can be done. Will DEP also do testing and which “suite code” will they use?   If residents are smart, they will obtain their own water test reports, and continue testing their water at least once a year there after.

The Yarasavage property currently has 7 gas wells.

Any bets the water tests come back as being Okie Dokie?

carrizo-washington blowout map

carrizo-washington blowout map2

©2013 by Dory Hippauf

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Liz Rosenbaum March 17, 2013 at 6:47 am

Spin, Downplaying, LIES – if the DEP (Department of Evasion and Prevarication) says everything is fine, then I would get the hell out of there.


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