Gas Wells & Pipelines
The people of North Central Texas are much more aware of gas wells, pipelines and drilling sites in our area thanks to the boom of the Barnett Shale. But in addition to counting the dollars the natural gas industry may deliver to the area, residents also need to focus on what makes sense- educating themselves on where equipment is located and how to stay safe. Subterranean pipelines are an invisible hazard and exposed pipelines may not be very well marked. There are more than 90,000 miles of pipeline in Texas, so it’s likely that multiple pipelines, identifiable or not, run through your community. The Barnett Shale geological formation is possibly the largest onshore natural gas field in the U.S.
So Where Are the Pipelines?
Signs indicating a pipeline’s location are often placed along its path. Pay attention to these signs to help prevent accidents. And if you see something you think may be an exposed pipeline, treat it as if it is. The Texas Railroad Commission provides a map of pipelines across the state. Look up your area by selecting your county. http://gis2.rrc.state.tx.us/public/startit.htm
Never dig before calling your local utility company—Don’t Be a Fool, Know the Rule!
For gas drilling sites in North Texas, maps and information can be found through Chesapeake’s Energy’s website in the neighborhood section: http://www.askchesapeake.com/Barnett-Shale/Neighborhood/Pages/information.aspx
How Can I Prepare for an Incident?
- There is typically little or no warning with incidents involving gas wells and/or pipelines. Because of this, it’s critical that you be prepared in the event of an emergency.
- Become familiar with gas well sites and pipelines.
- Familiarize yourself with “escape routes” in and around your neighborhood.
Know what to do in the event of a leak:
- Leave the area immediately on foot
- Warn others in the area
- Refrain from activities that could cause heat sparks
- Notify 9-1-1 of the leak when you reach safety
- Light a match, start an engine, or switch electrical equipment on and off (including lights)
- Attempt to use a cell phone until you’ve left the area—it can potentially cause a spark
- Drive into a vapor cloud
- Make contact with any escaping material, some products may be toxic or corrosive