MONROE TWP. — This makes three.
Emergency crews responded to a third emergency Thursday in less than a year at the Chapin Dehydration Station in Wyoming County across Route 309 from the Beaumont Inn.
Jay Devine of Devine & Partners, a public relations firm working for station owner PVR Partners, said the station released steam, not natural gas.
In a statement, Devine said a malfunctioning valve triggered the release, which they believe was harmless.
“There was no danger to the public from the water vapor release, and the vapor condensation remained on PVR’s site,” Devine said in the statement.
At 4:47 p.m. Thursday, the Luzerne County 911 dispatcher sent the call for what they thought was a natural gas release.
Neighbors said that, while they heard noise and saw heavy mist shooting from the compound, it wasn’t nearly as loud or large as the genuine gas release that woke the small community in the middle of the night last November.
The station is part of a natural gas pipeline system and removes moisture from the gas that comes from the north. Gas erupted in a similar fashion in February.
Kunkle Volunteer Fire Department Chief Jack Dodson said technicians from PVR arrived on scene about 10 minutes after and stopped the leak.
Crews from Kunkle Volunteer Fire Department, fire police from Harveys Lake and the Back Mountain Regional Fire and Ambulance chief were on the scene. A Kunkle department volunteer, Russ Coolbaugh, walked around the site taking air samples. He returned to report that no explosive gas hung in the air about an hour after the release was stopped.
For nearly two hours, the crews mulled around nearby while PVR employees worked down at the station. Dodson seemed frustrated at first because it was more than an hour before he got feedback from the workers.
Twenty of the station’s neighbors filed a lawsuit against PVR this month seeking damages in excess of $75,000, stating their quality of life has declined, their property had lost value and their health is threatened because the station and its frequent emergencies are so near.
PVR bought the station last year from the original builders, Chief Oil & Gas.