According to Palo Pinto County Fire Marshal Larry O’Neil, residents of a home on Cooper Lane in northeast Palo Pinto County were working on a water well pump.
“When the motor kicked on, there was a flash fire,” he said.
Cody Murray, his wife, Ashley, and their daughter, Alysa, suffered burns as did Cody Murray’s father, Jim Murray. Cody and Alysa were transported to Metroplex hospitals by Air Evac while Ashley and Jim Murray were taken to an area hospital.
Reports are that Ashley, Alysa and Jim Murray were treated and released while Cody remained in Parkland Hospital with burns to his back.
O’Neil said the Texas Railroad Commission and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality were notified. An investigator from the railroad commission was at the location Saturday.
“On Aug. 2, the Railroad Commission of Texas staff investigated an incident at a private water well in Palo Pinto County,” noted Michelle Banks, with the commission. “Apparently, a flash fire injured three adults and one child. The incident is also being investigated by Palo Pinto County fire marshal.
“In addition, the Railroad Commission of Texas is surveying surrounding producing oil and gas wells and water wells.”
Banks noted there is a current investigation of one other complaint of possible gas contamination of a water well in the area received Feb.
18 for a Singleton water well.
Tuesday, the state fire marshal interviewed Cody Murray and visited the location, O’Neil said.
Reports from O’Neil were that there are four wells in the vicinity of the home that are operated by EOG Resources. Each is a horizontal well for gas drilling only, permits show.
Permits show the four Singleton Unit wells were approved by the RRC in June 2008. There is no indication from the RRC that these wells are in any way responsible for natural gas being in the water wells.
Additionally, O’Neil said the state fire marshal found no evidence of accelerant (natural gas) at the water well Tuesday.
The Jack County Rural Volunteer Fire Department’s fundraiser to benefit the Murray family will take place 6-8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, at the Perrin Elementary School gym. There will be a barbecue dinner, auction, bake sale and more.
To donate auction items, bring them to the Jacksboro Fire Station by 4 p.m. Friday. Cash donations may be made at the Jacksboro Fire Station, to any Jack County fireman or at Bank of Jacksboro.