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Tests: Pa. gas drilling town’s water still fouled

October 16, 2011 • Business


Jean Carter poses in front of her home with cases of water that are delivered for her use, Friday, Oct. 14, 2011 in Dimock, Pa. State regulators blame faulty gas wells drilled by Cabot Oil & Gas Corp for leaking methane into the groundwater in Dimock, Pa. It was the first serious case of methane migration related to the Pennsylvania 3-year-old drilling boom, raising fears of potential environmental harm throughout the giant Marcellus Shale gas field. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

DIMOCK, Pa. (AP) — Three years after residents first noticed something wrong with their drinking-water wells, tanker trucks still rumble daily through this rural northeastern Pennsylvania village where methane gas courses through the aquifer and homeowners can light their water on fire.

One of the trucks stops at Ron and Jean Carter’s home and refills a 550-gallon plastic “water buffalo” container that supplies the couple with water for bathing, cleaning clothes and washing dishes. A loud hissing noise emanates from the vent stack that was connected to the Carters’ water well to prevent an explosion — an indication, they say, the well is still laced with dangerous levels of methane.

Recent testing confirms that gas continues to lurk in Dimock’s aquifer.
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