Reno, Azle earthquakes leave trail of damages

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by TODD UNGER

Bio | Email | Follow: @toddWFAA8

WFAA

Posted on January 16, 2014 at 11:47 PM

Updated Friday, Jan 17 at 1:08 PM

RENO — The Brown family has no doubts about what caused sinkholes to suddenly appear in their yard and cracks begin to surface throughout their home.

"It’s too much of a coincidence," said Steve Brown. "All of a sudden, we’re having wells, then sinkholes and earthquakes."

His wife, Barbara, has been documenting damage since the tremors started in October. By her count, there have been 32 in the past few months.

Their property is within a couple of miles of numerous injection well sites.

"Never, never happened before they were here," she said.

It's not just the Browns who've noticed damage.

Cracks are now visible on the walls of the council chamber inside Reno City Hall.

In nearby Azle, Mayor Alan Brundrett said he has heard complaints too.

"I hear a lot of reports in cracks in bricks and things like that," he said.

Still, he says the earthquakes in the area have been under a 4.0-magnitude, which is usually the point that damage starts to occur.

He said he hopes locals wait until a USGS study finds a definitive link between fracking and the earthquakes before they start demanding major changes.

At least 50 people are signed up to take a bus Tuesday down to Austin for the Railroad Commission of Texas meeting, which regulates oil and gas drilling in the state. The commission recently announced plans to hire a seismologist to monitor earthquakes near drill sites.

During the past two weeks, more than 1,000 people have showed up to two town hall meetings on the earthquakes.

Email tunger@wfaa.com
 

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