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BREAKING: Pennsylvania Fracking Spill A Haunting Reminder on BP Anniversary

On the anniversary of the BP disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, the fossil fuel industry has another out of control leak happening right now. Does this sound familiar? An oil and gas company is “attempting to kill the well” and working to contain a major spill.

According to WNEP-TV, a fracked gas well in rural northern Pennsylvania has blown, causing a major spill of fracking fluid into the environment. Bradford County emergency officials say thousands of gallons of tainted water have spilled from the Chesapeake Energy Corp. well site in LeRoy Township near Canton since early this morning.

Crews were fracking when the well blew out near the surface. A massive operation is underway in Bradford County to deal with the spill. Seven families have been evacuated so far.

Bradford County’s director of public safety said the well, operated by Chesapeake, blew near the surface, spilling thousands and thousands of gallons of frack fluid over containment walls, through fields, personal property and farms, even where cattle continue to graze.

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is taking groundwater and stream samples to determine the extent of the damage. Officials said fluids from the well have already contaminated Towanda Creek which feeds into the Susquehanna River, a source of drinking water for millions of people.

Chesapeake hasn’t made a public comment yet, so it will be interesting to see what the company has to say about this. 

It’s also worth noting that one of the companies responsible for the disaster in the Gulf a year ago today - Halliburton - operates in Bradford County and is a leading supplier of fracking services, including to Chesapeake Energy.  Halliburton reported a massive boost in profits earlier this week, largely derived from its work in unconventional gas and fracking in North America.  It will be interesting to learn whether their cement work or other involvement had anything to do with today’s disaster.

Head over to WNEP for more on this leaking well, and stay tuned for more updates as this story unfolds. 

Bradford County is no stranger to fracking disasters, as this TIME video shows:


Well, I guess we’ll finally get to find out what chemicals they’re using for fracking!

no the website does not list all, only those voluntarily described/revealed by some, not all, gas companies.

My only suggestion would be to stop leaning on the “tap on fire” demonstration. I know you mean well, but I’ve got friends back in the metropolitan area where I live who think someday they’ll be lighting their city water on fire and that’s their anchor argument against drilling. (Yeah, my friends might not be that bright, but most of aren’t.)

Wells spoil all the time because of methane migration. When I was growing up, relatives of mine had a hunting camp in the southern tier of WNY and the well there spoiled a couple times, even though there was no drilling going on anywhere in the area, and we would get amusement by holding a Bic to the water coming out of the tap. I’m not saying that drilling in the Marcellus hasn’t spoiled water wells and made “water” flammable. Just that it’s somewhat of a parlor trick that doesn’t do a lot to educate people on the real dangers and impacts of drilling.

That being said, keep up the good fight. The people that cut my checks are here to get your gas and will probably go to great lengths to make sure none of you do-gooders cock up their profits. Does PA have a recall process? Because you guys really do need a different governor. I’m going to have a great year stacking cheese and, unless my industry is held to account, you guys will end up screwed for the foreseeable future.

It shows what can happen True it is to the Extreme but the Gas Industry is not being Honest. Former Vice President Chenney thought it was OK to Drill Baby Drill, but now he supports a plan not to drill in his beloved Jackson Hole. Damn if this was so Great thwy should have a fraq well on his front yard

I live in a new fracking era and area, where do-gooders are still held at the will of non-voters opinion that someone is there to help them while the middle class still vote like they are in the top 1%. I hope we all get through this. We are at a crossroads, its time ppl see the fork in the road and make a committment to something they know in their hearts is happening to us AND everyones future. Why isn’t anyone asking alan greenspan questions? Like he didn’t know what was happening…

At this point how can we even trust the fossil fuel companies with our environment any more? Why haven’t more people cut back on fossil fuel use? Until this really affects our lives in a personal way – i.e. we don’t interact with these spills solely through the television – I think demand will remain high enough to justify risky fossil fuel extraction that lowers the quality of life where it is drilled for.

Former Bradford County Sheriff left his 6 figure job last year to become the keeper of the secrets of this corporate criminal company. He accused people trying to get PA safety inspectors to do their jobs of being eco-terrorists. I do hope he is investigated, and I hope he is sued for malfeasance, negligence and any other crime related to any pollution from this latest spill. Bullies need to have their day in court, of course. But, after conviction, I hope the civil trials begin and his ill-gotten gains from Cheseapeake are distributed to help repair those his actions harmed.

are for natural gas headed to norway, india and china. you couldnt get that piped onto your own property if you WANTED to. But, yes, Alex–the GOVERNMENT needs to start taxing these corporate thieves and stop accepting campaign finance money from them. We need to nationalize our oil and gas, seize their assets, and THEN we will have control over our energy use. We need solar, wind ==and dont say it cannot be done here–the technology has advanced to where it IS possible.

A good reason we dont pay your type any attention. We like the fossil fuel industry, didnt you know?

These wells are very dangerous for us if we cannot concentrate on job they can blew up and smash near our locality and farms the workers should be very carefully while they work.

This is ridiculous. It’s harmful and dangerous! Also, they’re cutting funding for education in PA to go through with this! It may create new jobs, but it has harmful effects enviromentally, as well as lessening jobs in education fields in PA and could lessen the number of students who can afford to go to college!

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