State-wide discussion continues on who will be responsible to pay for road damage caused by upcoming shale drilling.
Ohio is trying to reach an agreement with drilling companies so they’ll pay for any damage caused by the heavy equipment needed to extract oil and gas from shale rock. President of Meigs and Muskingum Township Associations Stephen Bradley said Anadarko Petroleum Corporation- the drilling company responsible for Muskingum County- has agreed to take care of the cost.
"They’ve stoned the roads like they said they would, they’ve put culverts in to get the water away," explained Bradley. "They have to have the roads so they can get into the site for themselves, so they have to keep them up."
There are currently five drilling sites in Muskingum County- four in Meigs Township and one in Blue Rock Township. Bradley said the roadways most likely to be effected by the heavy equipment are State Routes.
"If you get a soft spot you know, it’ll start showing up with all the stone they are hauling," said Bradley. "But right now SR-340 was just repaved this year so it’s holding up pretty good, SR-284 is holding up good, so right now state roads are in good shape."
Ohio Department of Transportation Deputy Director Lloyd Macadam estimated $2-million in construction may be needed to maintain the roads leading to well sites. Bradley said O-DOT will continue to monitor the work of the drilling companies to assure quality.