HOUSTON (Reuters) - One Texas oil worker was killed and three others hospitalized on Wednesday when a Chesapeake Energy Corp well caught fire during service work, a spokesman for the company said.
The workers were at a site in Burleson County, about 75 miles (120 km) east of Austin when a blow-out, or high pressure release, led to the blaze, according to local media. Names of the victims were not immediately available.
The well continued to burn for several hours after the incident, said a representative from the Burleson County Sheriff’s Office.
Three victims were transported via helicopters to medical facilities in Austin and Houston, Chesapeake spokesman Gordon Pennoyer said in a statement. Emergency personnel and specialists in oil-well fires were at the scene late on Wednesday, he said.
Chesapeake acquired its Burleson County acreage, part of the eastern part of the South Texas Eagle Ford Shale field, from WildHorse Resource Development in a deal that closed last year. The deal was part of Chesapeake’s plan to produce more oil instead of natural gas.
Reporting by Jennifer Hiller in Houston and Liz Hampton in Denver; Editing by Tom Brown, Sam Holmes and Sandra Maler