Well blowout near Watford City; this could be your 15 acres

Oil drilling is a dirty business. Well blowouts like this can occur anywhere.

Doesn’t it make sense to have appropriate regulations in place to make sure your property is protected when the inevitable occurs?

From Reuters:

A North Dakota oil well owned by Exxon Mobil subsidiary XTO Energy blew out on Saturday, leaking more than 550 barrels (23,100 gallons) of crude, some of which left the wellpad and seeped into surrounding grasses.

xto oil spillThe well, located in a rural area 25 miles southeast of Watford City, was being hydraulic fractured when its pressure control valves failed and it leaked the oil and about 110 barrels (4,620) of saltwater, according to state and company officials.

The well was brought under control on Sunday morning. No one was injured.

“We are working to understand the cause,” XTO spokeswoman Suann Guthrie said on Monday. “We are very sorry this incident has occurred.”

The company’s emergency response responded to the leak, and local officials were notified. XTO said it has begun cleanup at the site.

The well, Deep Creek Federal 43X-5D, is located on the same drilling pad as four other wells and was first drilled on April 25, according to state data.

According to environmental scientist Bill Seuss, the impacted area appears to be about 15 acres, or an area the size of 15 football fields. He says the state is working with the company on a remediation plan.

Shhh! Bakken Oil Spill is on “confidential status”

There have been 66 oil spill and eight oil-related fires in Montana so far this year

Salt water spills require local regulation to protect farmers and ranchers

Poplar pipeline spill another reminder that we need to keep fighting for the long-term sustainability of our communities

A personal story: Linda Monson, Yellowstone River southwest of Williston, North Dakota


About davidjkatz

The Moses family has lived on the Stillwater River since 1974, when George and Lucile Moses retired and moved to the Beehive from the Twin Cities. They’re gone now, but their four daughters (pictured at left, on the Beehive) and their families continue to spend time there, and have grown to love the area. This blog started as an email chain to keep the family informed about the threat of increased fracking activity in the area, but the desire to inform and get involved led to the creation of this blog.
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1 Response to Well blowout near Watford City; this could be your 15 acres

  1. Lee Wilder says:

    I am guessing that “remediation” does not restore the land to the pre-spill condition. We are seeing far too many of these “accidents.”

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