Canadian Manufacturing

Encana caps toxic blowout in northern Alberta

A damaged wellhead has been spewing natural gas and hydrogen sulphide since Sept. 21

FOX CREEK, Alta.—A blowout at a well in northern Alberta that has been venting natural gas and small amounts of a toxic chemical has been capped.

Encana says in an update on its website that the damaged wellhead 18 kilometres from Fox Creek has been brought under control and that the flow of natural gas and condensate has been stopped.

The blowout happened Sept. 21 at the well, which is licensed to produce hydrogen sulphide, a poisonous gas that smells like rotten eggs.

Company spokesman Jay Averill said last week that monitoring data showed low levels of hydrogen sulphide have been released, but they were well beneath those that would pose a health risk.

Encana says on its website that it is committed to fixing any environmental damage.

It says it’s also still working to determine the cause of the incident.

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