Gas Well Blast Injures Workers In Washington County, Gas line Explosion Kills Five in Allentown

Another important detail – sometimes, storage tanks catch fire and explode, and sometimes, wells explode – a blast (from a faulty gas line, ~Ed.) in Allentown, Pennsylvania earlier this month killed five people and destroyed eight homes.  Read more below. ~myles

Source : WPXI

Gas Well Explosion Rocks Avella

AVELLA, Pa. — An explosion and fire at a gas well injured three workers Wednesday night in Avella, authorities said.

The blast, at the Chesapeake Appalachia LLC Powers site was reported at about 6:20 p.m., Washington County emergency officials said.

Workers were transferring water used in a gas-extraction process called hydraulic fracturing, and several of the natural gas liquid storage tanks caught fire, said Katy Gresh, a spokeswoman for the Department of Environmental Protection’s southwest region.

During hydraulic fracturing, also called fracking, water mixed with sand and chemicals, some of them toxic, is forced into the wells at high pressure, shattering the underground shale and releasing trapped gas. Residents in several communities where fracking occurs have voiced concerns about possible water contamination and other safety issues, but the gas companies said the procedure has been used safely for decades.

Two workers were flown to Pittsburgh hospitals after Wednesday night’s explosion, and another was taken by ambulance, Gresh said. The extent of their injuries was not immediately known. The fire was reported extinguished at 9:30 p.m.

Neighbors along Meadowcraft Road said they heard explosions miles away from the drilling site.

“It was an explosion. I thought a C-130 crashed up here,” said Bob Dalesio. “They fly up here on Wednesday night. That’s how bad it was.”

“I was in my house and heard a big boom,” said Dana Cecchini. “I thought something happened upstairs. I looked outside and saw a big giant black cloud and flames.”

Gresh said the three wells at the western Pennsylvania site appeared to be unaffected but that will be confirmed as an investigation begins Thursday to determine the cause of the blast.

Company spokesman Stacey Brodak said emergency responders were keeping the natural gas liquids storage tanks cool. He said the wells had already been completed and there was no danger to the public or the environment.

Brodak said he was unable to provide an update on the conditions of the workers, but “our thoughts and prayers are with them and their families for a full recovery.”

Fire crews from the surrounding area battled the flames along with the county hazardous-materials team.

A gas explosion earlier this month in eastern Pennsylvania killed five people. The blast, in Allentown, sparked an inferno that burned for hours while crews tried to shut off the gas supply.

A 16-year-old girl and a 4-month-old boy were among those killed. Eight homes were destroyed.

Neighbors said the blast knocked shelves off walls, brought down ceilings and ripped a front door off its hinges.

That fiery blast was another in a series of natural-gas disasters to raise questions about the safety of the nation’s aging, 2.5-million-mile network of gas and liquid pipelines.

Source : WPXI

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4 thoughts on “Gas Well Blast Injures Workers In Washington County, Gas line Explosion Kills Five in Allentown

  1. Jeff Pritt

    Once again, the headline for this article is incorrect. It suggests that a gas well explosion killed 5 people in Allentown, Pennsylvania. There was a gas well explosion in Washington County which injured three workers. However, the explosion in Allentown was the result of the failure of a gas line which had been installed in 1928. It had absolutely nothing to do with a gas well.

  2. myles

    Thank you Jeff for all the help and support you have provided Monroe County’s concerned residents truly appreciate it. You are right – that title was misleading – it was an exploding gas LINE not a gas WELL that killed 5 people. We have made the edit. The only thing this proves is that in fact, the problems with natural gas production in this country span far beyond problems with hydraulic fracture – like the antiquated network of gas lines that are now failing.

  3. Jeff Pritt

    Myles, I am sorry that I have apparently offended you by insisting upon the accuracy of the information that is posted on your website. That is not my intent.

    I simply believe that if you wish to enter the public opinion arena by maintaining a web site which strongly advocates for one side of a very complicated issue, then you should at least take care to insure the accuracy of the information posted thereon. I think that is important because people will look to your site in order to help them evaluate the various points that are being debated with regard to this issue. Accordingly, the information should be presented in a factual manner so that each person can review it and reach their own conclusions.

    If a person fully and fairly reviews the pertinent information and reaches a conclusion that is different from mine, then I can certainly respect that, just a I respect the opinions which you and other members of your group hold. However, there is a lot of information out there, and people tend to skim over items such as the postings on this site. Therefore, it is truly important that the headlines of your postings accurately summarize the information contained therein, since one might reach a false conclusion from simply skimming over a misleading headline rather than reading an entire article.

  4. myles

    You didn’t offend me at all. I was totally being serious. You have genuinely helped this website serve its purpose – to educate, invite opinion, and promote discussion. It is not and has never been our intent to mislead or misrepresent. In the case of the content we post here, we tend to believe it stands on its own without exaggeration or deception required. In this particular case, the headline was misleading, we changed it. Thanks for the catch.


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