Parachute Creek spill: Day 74

Absorbent booms on Parachute Creek [COGCC photo]

Absorbent booms on Parachute Creek [COGCC photo]

CDPHE update May 20, 2013

Daily samples are continuing to show a shrinking area of benzene contamination in Parachute Creek surface water.

Location                         Readings (5/17/13)
CS6                                       2.1 ppb
CS7                                      Non-detect
CS8                                      Non-detect
CS9                                      Non-detect
CS10                                   Non-detect
CS11                                    Non-detect
Town of Parachute         Non-detect

Pumps continue to remove floating hydrocarbon from the groundwater surface from numerous wells and approximately 60-gallons of floating liquid hydrocarbons are being collected each day at the site. The upgraded groundwater aeration trench is in continuous operation and draft ground water sampling results show that the concentration of benzene in groundwater down gradient of the aeration trench is decreasing rapidly.

Last week a comprehensive ground water sampling program was completed that included samples from 27 monitoring points in and around the area impacted by the release. The groundwater monitoring data will be available in approximately two-weeks. Please note that the comprehensive ground water sampling was in addition to the ground water sampling and analysis activities that are being conducted on a daily basis from ground water monitoring wells that are key to demonstrating that contamination is not spreading, and evaluating whether existing remediation efforts are working.

Williams met with landowner, WPX Energy, and received approval to construct the piping system that will be used to transfer groundwater from the new floating hydrocarbon recovery wells to the ground water treatment system. The intent is to have the floating hydrocarbon recovery well infrastructure constructed, and tested by the time the ground water treatment system is ready to begin operation in mid-June 2013.

Over the weekend of May 18 – 19, 2013, Williams conducted a “pilot test” of electromagnetic (EM) geophysical surveys near the end of the floating hydrocarbon plume at the site. The EM geophysicists use a hand-held instrument to introduce an electrical current into the ground in an attempt to identify preferential groundwater flow paths such as gravel zones by measuring differences in electrical conductivity. The hand-held instrument is moved back and forth over the ground surface in “survey lines” in an attempt to generate a three-dimensional map of the subsurface. The results of the EM geophysics survey will be evaluated in the near future to determine if the technology provides useful information about contaminant flow paths at the site. Please note that there are many things that can interfere with geophysical surveys and reduce the usefulness of the data collected.
[end of update]


Williams May 17 update — Company Response Continuing to Show Progress in Protecting Parachute Creek, Recovering Increasing Volumes of Hydrocarbon Fluids

Water sampling test results at Williams Answers for Parachute website:  Testing Results & Other Info
Note: No test results are being shown for sampling sites upstream closer to the Williams gas processing plant.


CDPHE is accepting questions and comments from the public. Call or send your questions to:

David Walker, Hazardous Waste Corrective Action Project Manager
(303) 692-3354
Or toll free 1(888) 569-1831, Ext 3354

Hazardous Materials and Waste Mgmt Division
Colorado Dept of Public Health and Environment
4300 Cherry Creek Dr. S.
Denver, CO 80246

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