Testing continues on S. Caddo water wells contaminated by natural gas
KSLA News 12
Monday, April 19, 2010 7:50 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, April 20, 2010 6:25 PM EST
CADDO PARISH, LA (KSLA) - Caddo Parish Sheriff Steve Prator says the contamination of underground water systems from a recently drilled natural gas well has not spread, but residents already evacuated from their homes will have to stay away from the area for a little while longer.
At a news conference early Tuesday evening, Prator said the contamination had not spread to DeSoto Parish.
from AP Texas News/Houston Chronicle: About 135 homes in southern Caddo Parish have been evacuated as a precaution after natural gas was detected in drinking water wells. Crews were drilling for gas in the area.
The Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality says it found potentially dangerous chemical compounds in 35 of 45 private water wells it sampled. The wells draw their water from the Wilcox Aquifer.
According to Prator, there are two main concerns at the moment. One is the amount of gas within the each home's water well and the quality of the home's water. Once the water quality tests come back Wednesday evening, Prator said if the quality is acceptable, people would be escorted back to their homes by an entry team. That team would then test the gas quantity at the home.
Prator asked that everyone have patience, saying they wanted to get the evacuees home as soon as possible.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 29, 2009...
19 Cows Die Near Chesapeake Energy Gas Well
Yesterday local residents witnessed cows dying in a fenced in Louisiana pasture [in South Caddo Parish], just 150 feet from a Chesapeake well. Apparently some type of production, or fracking fluid ran offsite and into the pasture where the cows got into it and ingested it.
One person said she watched at least four cows, "tongues hanging, bleeding off front and back, foaming at the mouth and bellowing" collapse and die.
THURSDAY, MARCH 25, 2010...
Chesapeake, Schlumberger fined $22,000 each in cows' deaths
By Vickie Welborn
March 25, 2010
KEITHVILLE – Chesapeake Energy Corp. and its contractor Schlumberger Technology Corp. each must pay $22,000 for violating state law in connection with the deaths almost a year ago of 17 cows at a natural gas well site.
Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality mailed identical letters spelling out the settlement agreement with both companies on Tuesday. Each was informed that it must advertise the agreement and invite public comment.
Both companies deny the material discharged from the natural gas well site killed the cows, deny violations were committed and neither makes an admission of liability, according to the settlement document signed by LDEQ Assistant Secretary Paul D. Miller. Included in each fine is $1,300 in enforcement costs.
In a joint statement from Chesapeake’s Kevin McCotter and Schlumberger’s Stephen T. Harris, both companies acknowledged today entering into a proposed settlement agreement.
State Attorney General Buddy Caldwell also must give his concurrence. He has 90 days to reject the agreement. Both companies are required to forward a check within 10 days of receiving notice of the execution of the settlement agreement.
Citizens noticed the dying cows April 28 in a pasture owned by Cecil and Tyler Williams on state Highway 169 near the corner of Keatchie-Marshall Road in south Caddo Parish. Witnesses reported hearing them bellowing and seeing them bleeding before they fell over dead.
At the time, Schlumberger, as a contractor of Chesapeake, was performing routine fracturing of the natural gas well. LDEQ determined during its investigation that fluid leaked from the well pad then ran into an adjacent pasture after a rain.
A Dec. 2 report by contract toxicologist Dr. June Sutherlin now posted on the LDEQ Web site concludes the cows’ deaths were consistent with and suggestive of petroleum hydrocarbon ingestion with secondary aspiration pneumonia.
“Based on the typical period of time required for cattle to die from aspiration pneumonia secondary to petroleum hydrocarbon ingestion, it is likely that the cattle were exposed to petroleum hydrocarbons prior to April 28, 2009,” according to Sutherlin’s report.