Cemetery covered with residue after injection well blowout


A salt-water disposal injection well located on the grounds of NGL’s Barnhart 687 SWD operation on RM 131 in Barnhart, Texas, malfunctioned Friday afternoon, December 8, 2017, spewing material high into the air.

Winds gusting to 20 miles per hour carried the mist of material over a 6-foot privacy fence into the grounds of the adjacent Rest Haven cemetery, enveloping tombstones, trees and landscaping.

John Nanny, Irion County Commissioner Precinct 3 which covers the area, said “The railroad commission had them shut the well down completely, and inspectors were on-site Monday. They have been working with the company 24/7 to clean the area.”

“Barnhart residents initially were against having this well in this area,” Nanny added. “We lost that round, and the well was installed.  At the time, water for residents was the huge issue. Barnhart was going through a severe water shortage. While this particular situation wasn’t what was argued against, it’s not good.”

Crews performing the material cleanup hand-scrubbed tombstones, scraped the topsoil then applied bioremediation treatment and tilled the soil to mitigate any side effects from the material. The cemetery has been reopened to the public.

“I spoke with a representative from the company, I believe out of Denver, and they were very dedicated to making the situation right,” Nanny stated. “NGL, as an option to make sure this doesn’t happen again, is planning to cover the well with a building structure so this type of incident couldn’t happen again.”

Statement from the Railroad Commission of Texas:

Protection of public safety and our environment is the Railroad Commission’s highest priority. Our San Angelo District office was notified Friday, Dec. 8 of a saltwater disposal wellhead blowing produced water onto the Barnhart cemetery. The well’s operator, NGL Water Solutions Permian, LLC., shut in the  well and disposal operations have ceased during the ongoing cleanup. NGL reported the cause was failure of wellhead threads resulting in the wellhead blowing off.
NGL Water Solutions Permian, LLC. is required by Railroad Commission rules to contain all free-standing fluids and remediate the impacted area. We are continuing to monitor the operator’s ongoing cleanup of the site until it is brought into compliance with RRC rules.  Cleanup continued over the weekend and included tilling fluid-impacted soil and pressure- and hand-washing gravestones. The operator also plans to apply a bioremediation product to the fluid-impacted soil.
NGL Water Solutions Permian, LLC. will be required to file a “Crude Oil, Gas Well Liquids, or Associated Products Loss Report (H-8)” report with the Commission detailing the crude oil amount spilled, recovered and not recovered.

Residents with concerns about the ongoing cleanup may contact the Railroad Commission’s San Angelo District Office at 325-657-7450.

NGL SWD is the company/owner of the well
42999 W US Highway 67
Barnhart, TX

Location, Lease Information of the well

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