Thursday, July 29, 2010

Massive fracking chemical spill damages roads in three counties

A Chesapeake Energy contractor spilled hundreds of gallons of a mineral oil-based chemical on several roads in three counties, softening and damaging the roads and rendering them unusable until they can be repaired.

From the travel advisory issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation:

Motorists in the northern tier are advised that a one-mile section of Spring Hill Road (SR 1007 in Tuscarora Township, Bradford County) and Second Street (SR 3001 in Laceyville, Wyoming County) is currently closed following a spill of mineral oil-based drilling mud down the center of the road.

The road is currently closed from the intersection of Edinger Hill Road in Tuscarora Township along the length of Second Street in Laceyville.

An oily substance leaked from a truck in the area of the Champdale Farm gas well pad and has destabilized the roadway.

PennDOT, Chesapeake Energy and other emergency responders are on the scene.

Repairs will need to be made before the roadway can be reopened to traffic.

OK, some questions:

- How did this happen?
- Who is responsible for cleanup?
- Who will be getting the bill for the cleanup?
- Who is responsible for making sure these trucks aren't leaking chemicals onto the roads, and why was this one allowed to?
- How much of this chemical has gotten into the environment?
- Who will compensate the people whose lives have been disrupted by this spill?

This may be the first time (as far as we know) that this has happened locally, but it won't be the last.

Kids will be going back to school in a few weeks. School buses will be sharing the same roads as the heavy trucks hauling water, fracking chemicals, and other substances involved in this industry. How long until the first truck/bus collision?


trainhead391 said...

Who can we call when we see chemicals leaking from the backs of trucks marked "residual waste"? I see them going down Rt 29 leaking brown chemicals.

D.B. Echo said...

I would say call 911 right off to report a truck leaking chemicals - they canrelay the identifying information to the local or state police. Then I would say maybe call your own answering machine and leave the details for yourself - where (location and direction), when, what, and the identifying information for the truck. Then pass that information on to the Citizens' Voice ( (570) 821-2000)
, the Times Leader ((570) 829-7101), the DEP (Northeast Regional Office is at (570)-826-2511) - and then maybe to bloggers like the Susquehanna River Sentinel ( who will spread the word among the local networks of concerned citizens.