Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas

Railroad Commission Responds to Explosion in Pearsall

Photo courtesy of Pearsall Volunteer Fire Department

An explosion and fire rocked an oil fracking site in South Texas last night. Three were injured.

On Thursday night a fire and explosion rocked a disposal well near Pearsall, Texas in the Eagle Ford Shale. This afternoon the Railroad Commission of Texas, which oversees drilling in the state. sent the following statement to StateImpact Texas :

“A Railroad Commission inspector responded around 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, to a storage tank fire at a saltwater disposal facility operated by High Roller Well, LLC, south of Pearsall on State Highway 581, south of Pearsall. Preliminary information provided to the inspector indicates that while a truck was unloading saltwater with a skim of condensate (liquid hydrocarbons) into a collection tank, welders were working nearby and sparks from the welding may have ignited vapors around the storage tank, causing the explosion. A firewall around the storage tank site contained spilled fluids, which were picked up with by a vacuum truck.

No violations of RRC rules were found, and the High Roller Well LLC lease is in compliance with Commission rules. As injuries were reported in this incident, the lead investigating agency for this incident would be the federal agency, OSHA, which needs to be contacted for further information.”


About StateImpact

StateImpact seeks to inform and engage local communities with broadcast and online news focused on how state government decisions affect your lives.
Learn More »