Truck crash causes fracking water, diesel spill into Chartiers Creek

Truck crash causes fracking water, diesel spill into Chartiers Creek

Source: The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 21, 2014
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Crews remain on scene in Washington County after a three-truck crash early Monday spilled diesel fuel and fracking water into Chartiers Creek.

Two trucks carrying discharged fracking water stopped at a red light on Route 18 in Canton at 3 a.m. when a tractor trailer hauling more than 2,500 gallons of diesel fuel slammed into them from behind, said John Poister, a spokesman for the state Department of Environmental Protection. All three trucks overturned.

About 1,300 gallons of diesel and 400 gallons of fracking water spilled, though most of it was contained on the roadway and in the storm water system, Poister said. An unknown amount reached the creek.

“It’s not quite as bad as we thought, but we will be there most of the day,” Poister said, predicting Route 18 would remain closed in the area until early afternoon.

Traffic is being routed along a nine-mile detour, a Washington County emergency dispatcher said.

Coen Zappi Oil & Gas Co. of Washington operated the diesel tanker, Poister said. A company official, who declined to identify himself, referred questions to Washington-based 1923 Transportation, which he said owns and operates the tanker. A message left for 1923 Transportation was not returned.

Poister said the other tankers had been hauling frackwater from one Range Resources site to another. A spokesman for Range, a Cecil-based drilling company, could not immediately be reached.

Local fire departments and county hazmat workers are on scene with DEP officials and Weavertown Environmental Group, which has contained the spill to 11/2 miles of the creek and started cleaning, Poister said.

“We don’t know the environmental impact on the creek,” he said. “The diesel fuel, obviously, is a major concern.”

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