DEP fines driller $32,000 over Pa. oil tank blast

AP News
Posted: Oct 26, 2010 5:23 PM
DEP fines driller $32,000 over Pa. oil tank blast

Pennsylvania state regulators say a gas drilling company will pay $32,000 for environmental damage from a a deadly explosion.

The Department of Environmental Protection on Tuesday issued a fine for Huntley & Huntley. An oil tank at one of the company's wells at a western Pennsylvania drilling site exploded July 23, killing two welders.

DEP Secretary John Hanger says the blast damaged the well head and resulted in a spill of oil and brine.

Monroeville-based Huntley & Huntley Inc. denies responsibility for any violations but says it has agreed to pay a $25,000 penalty and $7,000 in reimbursement costs.

The DEP says some practices associated with tank repair will be changed. Huntley says it had separately agreed to help set up a training program for emergency workers who deal with gas wells and pipelines.

(This version CORRECTS total amount, with penalty and reimbursement costs, to $32,000, not $25,000.)