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Flood Assistance from Gas Companies Merits Commendation

 

They could have pulled their equipment to higher ground and told their employees to go home and safely sit out the recent flooding, but the top brass of Chesapeake Energy, Talisman Energy, and several other gas companies chose instead to dive in to the fray of recovery efforts and assist in any way they could. Even those readers who have had issues and disagreements with those involved with the exploration and extraction of natural gas from the Marcellus shale in the area must admit that the contributions by these industry giants went above and beyond what they might have expected from them in the past.

Bradford County Commissioners were quick to point out in the earliest days of the disaster that both Chesapeake and Talisman offered the use of their vehicles to deliver fresh water and other supplies and to conduct massive cleanups of numerous communities that might not have happened for several more weeks had we been dependent solely on government assistance. In Susquehanna County, it was reported that gas and support companies were utilizing their massive vacuum trucks to empty basements of area residents.

“From helping to distribute relief items at local charities and pumping and clearing out damaged properties to coordinating the movement of machinery throughout the region to aid in a speedy recovery for everyone, Chesapeake employees were involved with the response from the beginning and continue to help with the recovery,” stated Chesapeake Energy senior director of corporate development Brian Grove.

According to Grove, the gas company donated 21,000 bottles and several tanker trucks of drinking water to flood-stricken communities in Bradford, Sullivan, Wyoming, and Susquehanna counties. Residents of Laceyville, Sugar Run, Rome, and Wyalusing and Terry townships can thank Chesapeake for the convoy of front-end loaders, skid steers, dump trucks, and refuse containers that came into their towns to pick up and haul away their soggy carpets, drywall, and clothing.

Talisman Energy also reached out to the community in many ways, one of which went unnoticed because, almost as soon as they granted permission for Wilmot, Terry, and Albany township residents who work in Wyalusing to park in the large lot at their river water drafting site next to the Wyalusing- New Albany Road river bridge, PennDOT surprised everyone by removing the debris from it and reopening of the span.

NOMAC Drilling donated more than 220 volunteer man hours and 100 cases of water. Great Plains Oilfield Rentals provided pumps and fed people in the Wyalusing area. Mountain Energy Service provide vac trucks, dump trucks, loaders and other smaller equipment along the Route 6 corridor from Wyalusing to Tunkhannock, as well as more than 1,000 man hours in volunteer assistance. Meshoppen Stone sent out vac and dump trucks and power washing equipment. TAW Contracting of Monroeton and Powell made substantial contributions, as did Rascher Contracting of Ulster. Procter & Gamble at Mehoopany delivered paper products and cleaning supplies to a number of communities hit hardest by the flooding. I know that there are many more companies that should be on this list.

In addition to the aforementioned services and supplies, which were duplicated in the Athens and Ulster area, Chesapeake Energy contributed $25,000 in emergency assistance funds to the Wyoming County United Way and $10,000 in emergency relief funds to the Susquehanna County United Way.

Brian Grove, who was kind enough to assemble much of this information for the Rocket-Courier, noted that no well sites were compromised by Tropical Storm Lee, and the company’s operations will resume in the coming weeks through direct coordination with regulators and PennDOT. Join me in giving the workers and administrators of Chesapeake and all of the companies whose employees rolled up their sleeves and helped to prevent recovery efforts from becoming a logistical nightmare. Their efforts exemplify the companies’ “good neighbor” policies, and we are grateful for the assistance. 


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