12 February 2014, News Wires – An explosion at a gas well operated by Chevron in the Marcellus shale play sent one person to hospital and left another missing on Tuesday morning, the US supermajor said.
The fire at Chevron’s Lanco-7H well in Dunkard township in Greene County, Pennsylvania, continued to burn into the night on Tuesday, as Wild Well Control arrived on scene.
The Houston-based well intervention specialists were to “evaluate the fire and determine a course of action to put it out”, said John Poister, a spokesman for Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection.
Emergency personnel responded to a fire at around 6:45 am local time at a drilling site about 50 miles south of Pittsburgh and not far from the West Virginia border.
The injured victim was treated for “minor injuries” at a nearby hospital and released. One worker remained unaccounted for as night fell in Pennsylvania. Both were contracted employees.
“We have initiated emergency response procedures. Our primary concern is to contain the fire and ensure the safety of employees, contractors and the surrounding community,” Chevron said.
Crews were working on a drilling pad though it was not clear if they were actively drilling at the time of the blast.
Poister said there had not been any spills or environmental impact as a result of the explosion.
Intense flames had kept emergency responders them from getting too close to the fire throughout the day.
Local reports quoted emergency officials as saying the fire could burn for days.
Helicopter video footage showed a raging fire in a remote and snow-covered wooded area. Nearby residents were quoted as saying they felt the ground shake around the time of the blast.
State police set up a half-mile perimeter around the scene, according to reports.
Poister said an investigation would be launched into the cause of the blast.