Drilling for shale gas went wrong last week when operators accidentally drilled into one of their own wells that was engaged in production. The result is possibly contaminated drinking water from at least 12 homes.
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection issued citations to Antero Resources for breaching of their own wells. The incident occurred at Anteors five-well Primm Pad in Doddridge County, WV near West Union last week. The DEPs citation indicates that the rupture happened at a drilling depth of 641 feet, and that several water wells, an existing gas well, and an abandoned well in the area appear to be affected. Antero was given until October 1st to get the situation under control.
DEP reports the 12 private water wells in the area are having their water sampled.
No results are available yet.
Of those 12 water wells, the three closest to the Primm Pad have been disconnected from the homes as a precaution to ensure no gas gets into the homes. Antero and DEP are still trying to locate the owner of the 12th water well.
All of the homeowners, which are along Fred's Run near the unincorporated community of Joy, are being supplied with drinking water by Antero.
DEP officials say an investigation is on-going to determine the extent of damages.
**Note From Editor: We originally reported that water was contaminated, but the DEP can't confirm that until test results are back.