A natural gas drilling company shut down well operations as a precaution Tuesday as firefighters battled a stubborn brush fire over dozens of acres across Lower Tyrone and Perry townships in northern Fayette County.
Firefighters from several departments in Fayette and Westmoreland counties began fighting the blaze at about 10:28 a.m. and were still working to extinguish it through mid-afternoon, according to dispatch reports. At least one firefighter was being taken for treatment of smoke inhalation, reports said.
A representative from Range Resources reportedly was called to shut down natural gas wells in the rural area.
“We did receive information that Range Resources did have some active wells in that area, but the company was able to get personnel in there and shut all of those wells down by mid-afternoon. So we’ve been informed those wells are no longer a safety concern to the emergency responders who are still in there actively fighting that fire,” said John Poister of the state Department of Environmental Protection in Pittsburgh.
Crews had to extend hoses into the nearby Youghiogheny River to access water to fight one end of the fire, a Fayette County dispatch supervisor said.
“Water resources are the biggest problem right now,” the dispatcher said.
Firefighters were entering the fire zone near the entrance to Linden Hall Golf Course.
This article was written by Karl Polacek and Paul Peirce from The Daily Courier, Connellsville, Pa. and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.