Public not notified of spill adjacent to trout stream
JERSEY MILLS – Approximately 4,200 gallons of brine fluid from natural gas wells spilled adjacent to a native trout stream in the Pine Creek area in northwestern Lycoming County in early November, but the general public was not notified.
The state Department of Environmental Protection only notified parties that could have been affected by the spill, including the neighboring landowner and the nearest public water supply 15 miles downstream on Pine Creek, spokesman Neil Shader said Thursday.
The Nov. 7 spill was caused when a Stallion Oilfield Services water tanker truck hauling brine fluid for Pennsylvania General Energy (PGE) overturned along Truman Run Road off Route 414 north of Jersey Mills, he said.
The fluid was released into the soil adjacent to Truman Run, which is a tributary of Pine Creek, he said. The company began emergency cleanup and water quality monitoring the same day, he said.
The stream level due to continuous rain events appears to have mitigated any impact to aquatic life, Shader said.
DEP has performed a site inspection, conducted water quality monitoring on Pine Creek and on Truman Run, tested a private resident’s water supply nearby and collected a sample of brine fluid from the tanker truck, he said.
A private environmental consultant collected samples of impacted soil adjacent to Truman Run and continues to do so with water from Truman Run and Pine Creek at specified monitoring points, he said.
That information is being provided to DEP, which is awaiting additional results to determine if remediation beyond what was conducted at the scene is necessary, Shader said.
DEP does not speculate on possible future enforcement actions, Shader responded when asked if Stallion is facing sanctions.