Natural Gas Leak in Orangefield June 25
Representatives of the companies involved in the repair work have said that this leak may take several more days to complete, which means it could go into the weekend.
Throughout the night and morning, workers and equipment have arrived on the scene of the gas leak. Equipment is being set in place and work has begun to cap off the leak. Officials are unsure of an exact time frame of when to expect the leak to be repaired, but it could take several more days. Entergy was asked to shut off electricity in the area of Gulf Road. All precautions are being taken to protect the personnel working on the leak and those living around the area.
The only areas evacuated at this time are Gulf Road and Scales Lane. Residents who were evacuated from that area will continue to be displaced until an all clear is given and it is safe to return home. Plans are in place to make notifications to surrounding residents should a larger area need to be evacuated in an emergency. The Orange County Emergency Management has set up an incident command post on site. Local officials with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office and Bridge City Fire Department, along with state officials from the Texas Railroad Commission and Texas Commission on Environmental Quality are also on site overseeing the operation.
On Wednesday, June 25, 2014, around 8:45 a.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office received a call from an oil well company representative in reference to a natural gas leak at a well site at the end of Gulf Road off FM 408 in the Orangefield area of Orange County. The Bridge City Volunteer Fire Department, along with Sheriff’s Deputies, responded to the area of Gulf Road and Scales Lane. Officials took measurements of the gas in the air with Low Explosive Limit (LEL) detectors and there was not a measurable amount of gas in the area where homes were located at that time.
As the leak continued for several hours, the gas was not dissipating rapidly due to the weather conditions. The oil well company could not control the leak and it was necessary for a special response team from Houston, Texas to be contacted. Once the team arrived, it was recommended that homes in the vicinity of the well site be evacuated and for residents to remain out of their homes throughout the night.
Company officials believed the leak would not be under control until sometime on Thursday, June 26th.
The Orange County Emergency Management, Bridge City Fire Department, and Orange County Sheriff’s Office have personnel on scene while the response team repairs the leak. It does not appear at this time that there will be any further evacuations beyond Gulf Road and Scales Lane and FM 408 remains open. Officials will be closely monitoring the levels of gas in the air, the weather, and wind conditions, in order to take necessary action for the safety of those working on the leak and those residing in areas beyond the evacuated areas. More updates will be made available when or if there are any changes to current conditions.
There is no significant change from the previous update this morning. Most of today consisted of the workers getting equipment and tools in place to repair the gas leak. Repair work on the leak is stopped at dark, and will resume during daylight hours on Friday. This is due to the dangers involved in working in the dark without significant light sources.
A few of the residents who live on Gulf Road and Scales Lane have been escorted to their homes by officials who have detector equipment in order to allow them to retrieve certain necessities. Residents of Gulf Road and Scales Lane who have been displaced can speak with company officials located at the red tent on Gulf Road near FM 408 for assistance or any questions or concerns.