Under the Influence of Fracking?

In addition to the environmental and health threats posed by gas drilling, driving on PA roadways is also becoming more dangerous. 

The Pennsylvania State Police and the Department of Environmental Protection announced that during an October three-day joint safety enforcement operation, three out of every four drilling wastewater hauling trucks stopped were cited for safety violations.  Out of 1,175 trucks inspected, 207 were so dangerous they were immediately placed out of service, and 52 drivers were driving illegally. Here in Lycoming County, the record was even worse than the state-wide figures. Of the 340 vehicles inspected, 85% (289) were issued citations and 55 (nearly 1 in 5) were immediately taken off the road.

These are the trucks you see on the highway as you travel in the family car. These are the trucks that share PA’s back roads with busloads of school children.

This is an ongoing problem the drilling industry doesn’t seem to want to fix. Each drilling site requires upwards of 2,000 trucks hauling gravel, water, and chemicals in and toxic wastewater out.

As the industry pockets billions in profits, these vehicle fines are not much different from the DEP fines levied for illegal dumping and other environmental violations – just a part of the cost of business as usual.

PA’s Department of Environmental Protection Releases Video of Gas Leaks

This video is a bit slow to load but is worth watching if you have not had the opportunity to see a well pad or a leaky well.

http://pahomepage.com/fulltext/?nxd_id=161487&shr=addthis

Citizen Monitoring Info

For those watching the gas drilling industry’s activities, keep in mind that the federal EPA now has a hotline (they call it a tip line) for reporting issues that the public spots. details are available at this website:

http://www.epa.gov/region03/marcellus_shale/tipline.html

For broader information about spotting and reporting environmental problems to EPA, see:
In Pennsylvania drilling issues can also be reported to PA’s Department of Environmental Protection. As far as I know PA DEP does not – yet – have a hotline or tip line specific for gas drilling issues. Reports to PA DEP can be made according to the guidelines noted here: http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/report_an_incident/6010