Antero Well in Doddridge County to Remain Closed After Blast
State regulators have ordered Antero Resources to cease operations at a north-central West Virginia gas well pad where five workers were burned in an explosion.
The Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Oil and Gas said Friday the cause of Sunday’s fire at the Hinterer 1H well near New Milton in Doddridge County remains under investigation.
Colorado-based Antero must submit a report to the DEP by July 31 explaining what caused the accident and how it plans to safely resume operations.
The report must also include preventive measures the company plans to avoid similar incidents.
Antero says methane gas ignited as the crew was completing the well.
The DEP said the blast ruptured two tanks containing flow back water, but the secondary apparently containment system captured the fluid as designed.
WV State Police: Braxton Boy Deceased for ‘A Considerable Amount of Time’
A Braxton County mother was jailed and charged with child neglect resulting in death following the loss of her 8-year-old son.
Sgt. Michael Baylous from West Virginia State Police talked about the case on Friday in South Charleston.
West Virginia State Police were called when hospice caregivers were turned away by Valarie Brown, age 38, at the front door of her Sutton home on several occasions.
Her son Levi Burroughs was under the care of hospice because he suffered from Hurler’s Syndrome, a genetic disorder that causes organ damage and eventual death.
Most children afflicted with Hurler’s Syndrome do not live past the age of 10.
Sgt. Michael Baylous
“Obviously, [hospice] felt there was a need to get in there and provide treatment for this child and they were being denied that access,” explained First Sgt. Michael Baylous with the West Virginia State Police.
When the trooper arrived with a hospice worker on Thursday, Mrs. Brown once again resisted letting anyone into the home, but eventually allowed them inside. They found Levi deceased in a bed, wrapped in a blanket, his body partially decomposed.
Baylous said the child had been dead for “a considerable amount of time.”
“The child was denied care, denied care! Mrs. Brown did not allow Hospice to come in and provide the proper care and treatment that that child needed.”
Investigators are awaiting the results of an autopsy. What they find will be key to determining if Brown is charged with a more serious crime.
Baylous said the treatment of the boy was unconscionable.
“Here’s a child, in his last hours, was in conditions…He wasn’t in a loving and compassionate environment,” stated Baylous. “This child died alone!”
Police said they are familiar with Brown and “her pattern of behavior.” She’s been arrested on more than one occasion for drug related crimes. Now investigators want to find out what she was doing in the last few days of her son’s life.
“We want to know where Ms. Brown was during that entire time and what she was out doing,” according to Baylous. “Our investigators will work tirelessly on this.”
Brown also has a 6-year old son. He was last seen at the home this past weekend, but was staying with a grandparent at the time Brown was taken into custody.
She’s being held at the Central Regional Jail on $100,000 bail.
~~ Jennifer Smith ~~
Explosion at Doddridge County Fracking Site Seriously Injures Four
Federal investigators are trying to figure out what caused an explosion at Doddridge County fracking site over the weekend.
The blast injured at least seven people, including four workers who were sent to a hospital with life-threatening burns.
Residents and activists have long complained about safety practices by frackers operating in the state, where they draw natural gas from the Marcellus shale formation.
Traffic accidents involving trucks traveling to and from frack sites in the state are common, and explosions can be deadly.
Hydraulic fracturing was not underway at the time of Sunday’s blast in Doddridge County, WV.
The explosion occurred 50 yards away from the work crew and it did not involve the drilling rig.
Two storage tanks containing brine and fracking fluid from the well exploded at 4 AM EDT on Sunday Antero spokesman Alvyn Schopp said. Five workers were taken to hospital with burns, he said.
“We do not know the ignition source, but we suspect it was a methane explosion,” said Schopp, vice president at Antero, an oil and natural gas company controlled by Warburg Pincus LLC.
Fracking fFire at a Wetzel County Frack Site in 2010
The cause of the explosion remains a mystery, but it could not have come as a huge surprise to fed-up residents of the state.
In April, two workers were killed and two others were injured by an explosion at a frack site in Tyler County, WV, though the story was quickly buried amid news of the Boston marathon bombings.
Also in April, AlterNet published a feature article that cataloged frackers’ shoddy safety records in West Virginia, and described the pollution that they cause.
The piece includes a series of photographs of accidents, including the photo here , of a fire that burned for more than a week at a well site in September 2010:
“It burned for something like nine days,” Ed Wade, the resident who shot the photograph, told AlterNet. “But the [West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection] said there were no cases of air pollution. You believe that?”
~~ John Upton ~~
Doddridge County: Antero Idles WV Well Site; 5 Workers Burned
A fire at a natural gas drilling site in Doddridge County is under investigation after 8 workers were injured.
It happened Sunday around 4 AM at an Antero Resources operation near New Milton.
BANCS Volunteer Fire Chief Randy Trent said he got the call that the VFD needed to assist emergency services with a burn patient but soon got word it was a lot worse.
“Just after we left our station, our dispatch came back and told us there was a well fire and numerous burn patients,” explained Trent.
In fact, the crew hadn’t even arrived on scene when they met up with some of the victims.
“As we were traveling towards the scene, on West Virginia Route 18, we met different private vehicles that had patients in them,” according to Trent. “We were able to get some of them transferred to ambulances.”
The crew then headed to the accident site. Trent says he and a worker from Antero were the first to inspect the scene. They found two fracking tanks on fire. They were more than 50-feet away from the actual drilling rig. Flames were shooting about 8-10 feet into the air.
The firefighters brought their equipment to the drill pad and were able to extinguish the flames.
“We were able to use foam and put the fire out,” said Trent.
Eight workers were injured in the fire. Five of them were flown to the West Penn Burn Center in Pittsburgh according to a spokesman from Antero. Three others were transported to local hospitals. No word yet on their conditions.
Trent said it was a difficult situation to handle.
“Anytime you’re dealing with the severely injured like we were [Sunday], it’s a very traumatic situation, if not a scary situation.”
OSHA has been called in to investigate. The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection was also notified.
This was not the first fire at an Antero site here in West Virginia. Last year, a fire at an Antero drilling site in Harrison County injured three workers. The company was cited by the DEP.
Antero operates 15 drilling sites, in seven counties in West Virginia. The company is based out of Denver, Colorado.
~~ Jennifer Smith ~~
Doddridge County: Gas Well Explosion
As the result of a gas well explosion eight (8) workers were injured.
The blast happened about 4:00 AM early Sunday morning, July 07, 2013 at a well site off of Brushy Fork Road in New Milton owned by Antero Resources.
Antero Resources confirmed the location of the accident as the Hinterer 2H Well on the Ruddy Alt Pad.
An investigation is underway into the explosion.
Four of the workers were transported to the West Penn Burn Center in Pittsburgh, PA.
The others were taken to in-state hospitals.
There is no word on their conditions at this time.
The company operates 15 drilling rigs, in 7 counties, in North Central West Virginia.
Antero is based out of Denver, Colorado.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the WVDEP inspectors were on the scene early Sunday morning following the explosion.
the West Virginia Department of Oil and Gas was also alerted.
Antero Resources has also contacted a third party to investigate and inspect the well site.
According to Kevin Kilstrom, Vice President of Production for Antero Resources, the well was drilled and completed, and crews were preparing to enter production tubing into the well.
In addition to the well two frack tanks were a part of the accident.
ATV and Car Collision in Doddridge County
According to a Doddridge County Sheriff Deputy an ATV driven by Rocky Locke, Age 28, of Doddridge County, WV, struck a car in a T-bone style collision while traveling on Route 23 near Roundbottom Road.
Locke was flown to Ruby Memorial Hospital by Air Evac Lifeteam.
The driver of the car did not sustain serious injuries.
Locke suffered extensive injuries and is currently in critical condition at Ruby Memorial Hospital.
Harrison County Prosecutor to Seek Charge in Boy’s Shooting
Harrison County Prosecutor Joe Shaffer says he’ll seek an indictment of a Jarvisville woman who shot her 11-year-old grandson to death while firing a weapon in the dark at suspected intruders.
Shaffer said he wants a grand jury to consider the case against 57-year-old Tina Owens when it meets in September.
Sheriff Albert Marano says Owens fired multiple shots from a .40-caliber handgun Sunday night.
One pierced the wall of her son’s home about 200 yards away.
The bullet hit William Owens in the chest as he lay in bed.
Other children in the home at the time were unharmed.
Shaffer says gun ownership and the responsibility that accompanies it are important public issues, and 16 citizens should consider it.
He says it’s a difficult but necessary decision.
Grandma Accidentally Shoots 11-Year-Old Harrison County Boy
An 11-year-old West Virginia boy died of a gunshot wound to the chest after one of several bullets his grandmother had fired at suspected intruders went through his bedroom wall.
William Owens was lying in his bed just before midnight Sunday when a bullet from the .40-caliber handgun pierced the trailer’s wall and struck him, Harrison County Sheriff Albert Marano said Monday.
Tina Owens, 57, had not been charged as of Monday afternoon, but Marano said the investigation was continuing. The results will be turned over to the Harrison County prosecutor’s office, which will decide whether to pursue charges.
Tina Owens’ home and the boy’s home are about 200 yards apart in the rural area of Jarvisville, Marano said. Tina Owens and her son both went outside their homes when they heard what they thought were intruders.
“She thought they were tampering with her property,“ Marano said, “and she fired multiple times to scare them off.“
It’s unclear whether there were any intruders. Marano said deputies found no one else at the scene when they arrived.
Marano said other children were in the home at the time, but no one else was hurt.
Clay County: Man Killed after Pointing Gun at Troopers
West virginia State Police Troopers shot and killed a Clay County, WV man Wednesday morning, June 26, 2013 while trying to execute a search warrant.
WV State Police Spokesman First Sgt. Michael Baylous says the agency’s Special Response Team and a team from the federal Drug Enforcement Unit knocked on the door of the house on Maysel Laurel Road at 6:05 AM.
“When the Special Response Team knocked and announced their presence the suspect didn’t open the door for them, so they had to breach the door,” Baylous said. “When they did breach the door they encountered the suspect with a weapon pointed toward the troopers.”
Troopers fired and the man was killed.
He is identified as Richard Dale Kohler, age 66, from Maysel.
“Troopers had to respond to the immediate threat,” Baylous said.
State Police officers were attempting to serve the search warrant as part of an ongoing drug investigation.
Baylous said once they saw the man with the gun pointed at them there was no time for negotiations.
“When something like that happens you immediately revert back to your training and your instincts and your knowledge that you’ve accumulated through the years and you respond to the threat,” Baylous said.
An Accident in Doddridge County Claims One Life and Multiple Injuries
Those involved in accident were:
Mindy Weaver, age 30, of Bridgeport, WV who died was traveling west and lost control of her vehicle.
Vehicle which was collided by Weaver was driven by David Naill, age 43, from Maryland.
Karen Lemmert, age 43 from Maryland was passenger with Naill.
Lemmert and Naill sustained injuries and were transported to Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown and listed in critical condition.
A juvenile passenger in Weaver’s car was also flown to Ruby Memorial Hospital.
The accident happened on U.S. highway 50 on Wednesday, June 26, 2013 about 5:40 PM.
According to West Virginia State Police a car travelling west crossed the median and hit a car travelling eastbound near the Long Run Road in Doddridge County, WV.
West Virginia State Police has confirmed one person was killed and three others were flown from the accident.
HealthNet and AirEvac Lifeteam were both on the scene.
Three people injured were flown to Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown by medical helicopters.
No Names have been released by the officials.
WV State Police as well as Doddridge County Sheriff’s Deputies, Doddridge County Ambulance Authority, Doddridge EMS and West Union Fire Department were at the scene og the accident.
Ritchie County: Accident Claims Life Of Woman, Juvenile Passenger
The Fatal accident happened just about 7:40 AM Saturday morning, June 22, 2013 at the intersection of U.S. Highway 50 and Simington Drive near Ellenboro, Ritchie County, WV.
Cheryl Horner of Pennsboro, and a young female juvenile were traveling in a 2005 Dodge Ram Truck westbound on U.S. highway 50, when a 2007 MAC water tanker truck, owned by Jay Bee Oil and Gas Incorporated of Union, NJ traveling south bound on Simington Drive struck Horner’s vehicle.
Both driver and the passenger of the Dodge Ram truck were pronounced dead on the scene.
The MAC water tanker also struck a 2013 Kenworth tanker truck owned by West Virginia Oil Gathering LLC of Frazeysburg, Ohio, traveling westbound on U.S. Highway 50, carrying crude oil.
The MAC truck driver has been identified has Caitlin Hines, of Parkersburg, WV.
The Kenworth truck driver, Andy Cornell of Belpre, Ohio was not listed as receiving any injuries.
Hines was taken to Camden Clark Memorial Hospital in Parkersburg.
The West Virginia State Police, Ritchie County Sheriff’s Department, Pennsboro Police Department, Volunteer Fire Departments from Ellenboro, Pennsboro, and Harrisville, Ritchie County Ambulance Authority, Ritchie County Emergency Management, WV Department of Highways, and Public Safety Commission all responded to the accident.
Jane Lew: West Virginia State Police Investigating Stabbing
A man was supposedly stabbed around 8:00 PM Sunday, June 23, 2013 on Broad Run Road in Jane Lew, WV.
Stabbing happened during a family fight when the man’s father sent his son to hospital.
The man was flown to Ruby Memorial Hospital.
The West Virginia State Police has not released any information about the incident because the case is still under investigation by State Police in Lewis County.
School Buses in Braxton County Has Been Vandalized
Nearly every school bus owned by the Braxton County school system has been vandalized.
One by one the windows and windshields were broken out of 30 vehicles sometime early Wednesday morning in a parking lot near Sutton.
Braxton County Director of Curriculum Services Brenda Wells told MetroNews Wednesday it was nothing more than senseless vandalism.
“I just can’t imagine who would do that when we are here to support kids. That’s what it’s all about,” she said. “It’s just frustrating to find that people don’t see the big picture of things.”
Only one or two buses were not damaged. Investigators believe those responsible used fire extinguishers as their tools of destruction.
“Our buses are all parked in a long row and you see each bus where the front windows are mainly smashed out and many buses have the side windows smashed out as well. There’s glass all over,” Wells said.
Damage estimates are expected to exceed $100,000. Wells said one bus alone has about $3,000 in damages.
“Some of the buses it’s almost every window,” she said.
State Police Troopers and Braxton County Sheriff’s deputies are investigating.
Braxton County: Frametown Fire Claims Life
Another Fire in Braxton County has claimed one life.
The state Fire Marshal’s Office says it appears an electrical problem started a deadly fire in Braxton County.
The fire happened about 10:00 PM Thursday at a trailer about a mile off the Frametown exit.
The victim, a 74-year-old man, was trapped inside the residence in Frametown, WV.
The home was near Granny’s Kitchen, a 911 dispatcher said.
The man’s body was found in the the living room.
Investigators on the scene said there were no smoke detectors in the home.
The victim’s name has not been released.
Frametown Volunteer Firefighters responded to the fire.
Clay County: State Police Says Shooting Was Not Random
West Virginia State Police Troopers in Clay County say the man shot and killed in his garden Tuesday was the victim of a shotgun blast.
State Police Captain David Lemmon said Wednesday Clarence Jack Stone, age 65, of Indore, WVl died of those shotgun wounds to the torso.
Lemmon says State Troopers have spoken with a person of interest.
“We have interviewed persons of interest, person, but again we are going through, as with any case, possible motives. You don’t want to get tunnel vision, remain objective,” Lemmon said.
Troopers do not believe the shooting was random.
Stone was a lifelong Clay County resident who spent some of his leisure time in the community of Hartland Bottom where he tended a garden with another man.
Captain Lemmon said Wednesday it is possible someone saw the shooting or knew of a dispute Stone was having.
“We’re urging anyone in the community having that knowledge or information that could lead to a successful prosecution to contact the Clay State Police Detachment,” Lemmon said.
Evidence in the case has been sent to the State Police Crime Lab. Troopers continued to conduct interviews Wednesday.
The Clay State Police Detachment number is 304.286.3185.
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