The Parker family in Dixie, Louisiana was shocked when they found out that the water flowing from their home faucets was flammable. As reported by KSLA News 12, they had been having issues with their water for a year, but thought it wasn’t cause for serious concern until their daughter Sarah Evans visited and made the discovery. Sarah explained what prompted the test, "I did it because I'd seen it on TV before and a flame came up…In the morning, you come in and turn the water on and there is so much air pressure in the lines that is just blows water everywhere, you're soaked."
The Parkers have two homes on their property, which share a private water well, so Sarah tested the second home where her brother lives and found that, "His water blew up and caught the fringe of the curtains, that is how high the flames came up."
In addition to that, 17-year-old Meaghan Parker had a fainting episode while doing the dishes and doctors could not identify the cause. "My dad came in and tried to talk to me, and I was unresponsive and he said that I leaned back on the sink, and let go, and hit the floor," Meaghan recalled.
The Louisiana family believes that their well has a methane gas leak, which John Parker thinks could be caused by Anadarko Petroleum Corporation. The oil and gas company is drilling nearby the homes and John said, "This only started since they drilled these wells."
Anadarko External Communcations Director John Christiansen issued a statement to KSLA which read: “At this time, no one knows the source of this issue, and the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources Office of Conservation has been notified so that a third-party expert can collect samples, conduct further testing and determine the source.”
The land is rich in natural gas so experts have said that there is a possibility that the gas entered the well naturally. While hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, of shale has been sited in areas of the United States as a source of environmental pollution and contamination of drinking water, Hydrologist Gary Hanson said he has seen incidents where wells are drilled into shale that can produce gas. He added, "I'd have to look at it case by case, but we have no examples where we have actually seen natural gas coming in from a well, that was drilled nearby.”
Until a determination can be made and the problem can be remedied, the Parkers have decided to shut off their well water and switched to the community water system.
More info: KSLA
- Nature & Environment
- Sarah Evans