Cabot Oil and Gas was fined $120,000 Tuesday for a storage tank explosion that injured one contractor and caused a production water spill in January.

The explosion happened near two Cabot operated wells in Jessup Township, Pennsylvania.

A water truck driver looked inside the 21,000 gallon tank before the explosion and used his cellphone as a flashlight to check the tank’s fluid level.

The phone set off flammable vapors, causing a blast that ruptured the tank and spilled 2,835 gallons of production water.

The unidentified worker suffered minor burns but was able to return to work shortly after the accident, the Scranton Times-Tribune said.

The nearby wells were shut in immediately after the blast and Pennsylvania-based Cabot deployed vacuum trucks to clean the spill.

Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection said some of the spilled production water “impacted soil off the well pad.”

The DEP fined the company $120,000 for violations of the Oil and Gas Act, the Solid Waster Management Act and the Clean Streams Act.

“As a result of our review of this incident, we have implemented additional safeguards into our design and construction practices across our operations, and we continue to work toward our goal of zero incidents and maintaining a safe, reliable workplace,” a Cabot spokesman said.


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