Pennsylvania

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Texas Teams Lead Response To Pennsylvania Well Fires

Image via Wild Well Control

Wild Well responders train for a well fire

When Pennsylvania natural gas well blows out or catches fire, who do you call?

More likely than not, it’s the job of a Texas-based well plugging team to stop a spill or put out a blaze.

In a joint report, StateImpact Pennsylvania’s Scott Detrow and StateImpact Texas’s Dave Fehling explain the Texas teams’ skills and responsibilities, and how Pennsylvania firefighters are being taught how to handle well fires.

We begin in Pennsylvania, with Scott Detrow.

Read the rest of the report at the StateImpact Texas website.

“We found that because Pennsylvania is structured with small volunteer (fire) departments in every community, it was a huge undertaking,” said Casey Davis, an executive with Wild Well Control in Houston.

Working with the Pennsylvania Fire Commissioner’s office, Wild Well Control said it has trained some 4,500 of Pennsylvania’s “first responders,” many of them volunteer firefighters.

“Your first thought is, your fire department is going to arrive, get their water flowing, and extinguish that fire,” said Davis. But his message to them is the opposite. Even if firefighters were successful in putting out a high-pressure natural gas fire, the result would be an out-of-control release of more explosive natural gas. In other words, it’s better to let the gas burn until crews with specialized equipment can get there to stop the flow.

And for more on those emergency responder classes, click here.

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