A natural gas well in Utah owned by Devon Energy Corp., which apparently caught fire just after midnight Tuesday, may take up to a week to extinguish, said authorities.
The fire at about 12:10 a.m. led to a precautionary evacuation of three homes in the area that extended to a half-mile radius of the well site in Duchesne County, north of Roosevelt. The evacuation, still in effect late Tuesday, was prompted over concerns about the possible release of hydrogen sulfide gas.
The Duchesne County Sheriff’s Office said it could take “up to a week or longer to bring things back to normal conditions.”
Crews working on a rig operated by Frontier Drilling had completed drilling a vertical well shaft at the site shortly before the fire. They notified authorities and said a gas blowout had occurred, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff’s deputies and Roosevelt firefighters spent several hours at the scene as workers tried to regain control of the well, authorities said. However, before 7 a.m. Tuesday, another fire erupted that was apparently ignited by fumes. No one was reportedly injured.
A Devon spokesman said the company could not speculate on how long the well fire would take to extinguish. Fires at rig sites are “rare.” Devon and Frontier were said to be taking care of the short-term needs of people evacuated.
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