Little Hocking Man Killled In Natural Gas Well Explosion

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

UPDATE: 2/18/2013 10:44 PM

Central Environment Services COO Jeff Harper released this statement Monday morning about the death of employee Brian Hopkins.

"On the morning of February 15, 2013, our employee, Brian Hopkins, was at a customer’s well-pad near Flemington in Taylor County West Virginia, performing normal work-related tasks when an explosion occurred, killing Brian and causing some damage to area where he was working.

There are few details as to what happened, but here’s what we know at this point: Brian was on the work site and near two of the tanks when the explosion occurred.He had not begun transferring water, a routine activity that our employees do every day, when the accident took place. The explosion occurred at a producing well site owned by EQT,and is not related to drilling. The well site is producing dry gas and does not contain any condensates.

An investigation involving state and federal regulatory officials into the cause of this accident is currently underway and our company is cooperating fully with their efforts. Additionally, our internal safety department is conducting its own investigation in an effort to understand what caused this accident and how we can ensure the continued safety of our employees at job sites.We have an excellent safety record and always put the safety and well-being of our employees first.This is the first time we’ve ever experienced such a tragic loss at CES.

Brian was an exceptional employee, a good friend to his co-workers and a well-liked member of the CES family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this tragic time and we share in their sorrow."

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UPDATE: 2/18/2013 10:25 PM

Central Environmental Services CEO Jeff Harper released a statement this morning regarding the local man killed over the weekend in a well explosion.

"On the morning of February 15, 2013, our employee, Brian Hopkins, was at a customer’s well-pad near Flemington in Taylor County West Virginia, performing normal work-related tasks when an explosion occurred, killing Brian and causing some damage to area where he was working.

There are few details as to what happened, but here’s what we know at this point: Brian was on the work site and near two of the tanks when the explosion occurred.He had not begun transferring water, a routine activity that our employees do every day, when the accident took place. The explosion occurred at a producing well site owned by EQT,and is not related to drilling. The well site is producing dry gas and does not contain any condensates.

An investigation involving state and federal regulatory officials into the cause of this accident is currently underway and our company is cooperating fully with their efforts. Additionally, our internal safety department is conducting its own investigation in an effort to understand what caused this accident and how we can ensure the continued safety of our employees at job sites.We have an excellent safety record and always put the safety and well-being of our employees first.This is the first time we’ve ever experienced such a tragic loss at CES.

Brian was an exceptional employee, a good friend to his co-workers and a well-liked member of the CES family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this tragic time and we share in their sorrow."

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FLEMINGTON, W.Va. (AP) - A contractor has identified an employee who was killed in an explosion at an EQT natural gas well pad in Taylor County.

Central Environmental Services CEO Jeff Harper says Brian Hopkins, from Little Hocking, Ohio was near two tanks when the explosion occurred on Friday.

The state Department of Environmental Protection has said the worker was attempting to transfer briny wastewater from a tank into a truck.

Harper says Hopkins hadn't begun transferring water when the explosion occurred. He says the transfer is a routine activity that the company's employees do every day.

Harper says CES is cooperating with state and federal investigators. The company also is conducting an internal investigation.

EQT spokeswoman Linda Robertson has said the accident wasn't related to drilling.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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