Jenks man frustrated by oil discovered in his front yard

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Reported by: Sharon Phillips
Updated: 3/04/2013 9:18 am Published: 3/03/2013 6:25 pm

The discovery of oil is causing a lot of problems for a Jenks family and their neighbors.

It happened in the Churchill Park addition in Jenks after the crude bubbled up in one man’s front yard near 121st and Elwood.

James McCarthy lives there with his wife and three small children. One day he noticed the oil bubbling up around his mailbox and that’s when he called the City of Jenks to come check it out.

When you think of oil, you can imagine striking it rich however, this is not what McCarthy had in mind.

"I was shocked and I really didn't know what to do and with that said, I called the City of Jenks and asked them what the problem was," he says.

As a father, he and his wife were concerned the oil would get into their water line.

"D-E-Q came out and tested it a couple of times and it checked out okay,” says McCarthy.

And it’s not just their water this family is concerned about, but also the mess.

"We are actually tracking oil inside the house and so every time I mop you can see the black residue inside the house,” says McCarthy.

FOX23 wanted to find out why the builder built on top of an oil well, so we checked with a former builder and also James’ neighbor.

"No, you would not build if you knew there was an oil well so this was something that they did not know,” says Paul Crosby.

Crosby has built many houses in the addition but did not build the McCarthy’s. However, he says he knows the builder personally and doubts they even knew about the oil well hiding beneath the earth.

"It's usually all checked out ahead of time, and I actually talked to the commissioner and this was kind of a surprise to them,” says Crosby.

Before the Oklahoma Corporation Commission can plug the well, it first has to find the starting point. This is done by drilling into the soil. So far, we’re told the drill has gone down about 360 feet and could go as far as 1200 feet.

Typically it can cost anywhere from $500 to $10,000 to plug an abandoned well. An emergency fund set up by Oklahoma oil and gas producers will take care of the cost.

This isn’t the first time that oil has been discovered in this neighborhood. Back in January, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission had to plug another well.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

aleman - 3/17/2013 11:58 AM
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Back in the day oil naturally came to the surface in this area,get a good rain or two and since oil floats on water...

bobby j howell - 3/3/2013 9:37 PM
0 Votes
That's what happens when Builders build Homes on property that has been drilled on years ago and pluged or so they say.It's happened many times before and just think if you had a Gas well under your house witch there are many of around Tulsa and many areas.It will happen more as time goes by.
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