DEP Releases Reports on Chevron Lanco Well Fire Incident

PITTSBURGH -- The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has completed its After-Action Review of the fatal well fire that occurred on Chevron’s Lanco gas well pad on February 11, 2014. The report, released today, provides a summary of the incident, a chronology of events, a review of the problems encountered during the well incident and recommendations.

The report points to possible human error and a failed screw and nut assembly as factors that allowed gas to escape the well and led to the fire. Chevron has since inspected other wells with similar installations and issued guidelines.

The DEP report is critical of on-site communications between Chevron and DEP, as well as the company and the media. It recommends establishing a specialized response protocol that would set up a system for DEP senior managers to coordinate operational response and establish DEP’s authority on the site to ensure that DEP staff has proper equipment, access and adequate staffing to perform their function.

A separate DEP Bureau of Investigations report examines more closely the factors leading up to the fire and makes specific observations about staffing, training and management oversight of the operations on the well pad.

Editor’s Note: The After-Action Review and the Bureau of Investigations Summary can be viewed by visiting and entering keyword: After Action.

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