Metz, WV – Two explosions Wednesday, in the Metz area of Marion County, are still under investigation.
Consol Energy is mining about a half mile north of Metz. They have been in that area plugging gas and oil wells for about two years, but right now, no one is saying if the leaks are related to the mining. They are still unsure of the cause for the explosions.
But everyone involved says they have never seen a situation like what happened Wednesday.
“It was just the most loud explosion, I cant even explain how loud it was,” said Marsha Delaney, who was woken up early Wednesday morning by an explosion in her Metz home.
That loud noise was natural gas exploding underneath the Delaney’s home. Then, about 12 hours later, a second explosion. In a neighbors garage. Witnesses say the gas accumulated on the roof and ignited late Wednesday afternoon.
“They were both based on the same principle, we had an explosion of some type of natural gas,” said Chief Jim Moran, with the Mannington Fire Department.
This was the scene Wednesday night, emergency crews from around the area, still trying to figure out where the gas was coming from.
“We are at a very serious stage at this point in time, until we find the source,” said Moran.
Small amounts of natural gas have been detected in the pump room behind the Delaney’s, but crews are still searching for the source of the gas leak.
“Right now we are left homeless and nobody wants to take any blame for anything and we really don’t know what’s going to happen,” said Marsha Delaney.
Consol Energy is plugging wells in the area, and owns much of the surrounding property. The Delaney’s say, there is a well located somewhere on their property that has not yet been plugged, because it hasn’t been found.
But neither has any more substantial traces of methane gas, despite crews using the most sensitive equipment. But until the source is found, and the problem solved, residents are still left with questions.
“You have to lay down and night and wonder if the big bang is going to hit again,” said Marsha Delaney.
The residents were evacuated Wednesday night. Consol has offered to put all of them up in a hotel. The fire department is recommending that they stay out of their homes, until the source of the gas leak is found.