Charleston, WV -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/10/2013 -- Charleston personal injury attorney, Chris Heavens, is concerned for residents' safety in the West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio regions. Recent evidence published in Science magazine suggests that residents under the Marcellus Shale Play area of these states may experience severe water quality issues. This underground rock system contains some of the greatest concentrations of untapped natural gas in the nation and gas companies are anxious to access this rich mine of energy. In fact, companies are so anxious to get to this gas that there is a possibility they may not be considering some of the environmental impact associated with their techniques for extracting it.
A recent paper published in Science magazine affirms that, although hydraulic fracturing has been used for more than 80 years to reach hard-to-access gas deposits, scientists still do not completely understand the possible environmental impacts of this process and how it may affect the water quality in the areas surrounding these wells.
The primary concern with “fracking,” as it is called, is the use of chemicals that may leach into the surrounding water systems. Chris Heavens, a Charleston personal injury lawyer , explains.
"In order to reach these deeply-buried gas deposits, gas companies use chemicals designed to handle bacteria and other obstructions that may impede the progress of the well. Many of these chemicals are unknown except to those inside the gas companies, as regulations do not require these companies to release the names of chemicals used unless they are proprietary,” says Heavens. “At least 750 chemical compounds that we know of have been used in hydraulic fracturing for the past five years, and some of them are dangerous or deadly if they leak into the local water supply."
However, the contamination of groundwater is not the only danger associated with fracking. If the chemicals resurface from the well itself, workers in the immediate area are in danger of contamination. Furthermore, these chemicals could feasibly end up forming toxic pools on the surface of the ground itself, sometimes at some distance from the well head. If that is the case, innocent people could be harmed by coming into contact with these pools.
Finally, there is the risk of the gas itself. Methane is not considered a health hazard; however, methane lowers the oxygen in water and increases the solubility of toxic elements such as arsenic. This could lead to well water contamination for those living around the fracking area. It can also cause terrible explosions that can rip through a work site or community, taking lives and causing devastation.
About Chris Heavens
Chris Heavens, a West Virginia personal injury lawyer , was formerly a lawyer for large insurance companies and understands the techniques used by big business to deny individuals their rights. While individuals may have access to resources such as West Virginia Legal Aid for some legal issues, Mr. Heavens, a personal injury lawyer in Charleston, West Virginia, can represent these clients’ interests against large companies who have the resources to deny them compensation for injuries.
About Heavens Law
Chris Heavens of Heavens Law spent many years as an attorney for insurance companies before becoming a personal injury lawyer in West Virginia. Mr. Heavens has since spent nearly 20 years representing the people of West Virginia as a Charleston personal injury attorney in cases such as car accidents, workplace lawsuits and suits against insurance companies.
For More Information: www.heavenslaw.com