MAYVILLE - The Chautauqua County Department of Public Facilities recently posted weight limit restrictions on County Routes 8, 10 and 23 in the towns of Clymer, North Harmony and Panama, to limit the use of these highways to vehicles weighing less than 12,000 pounds per axel.
This was a direct result of the notice the county received about the pending use of two gas wells located just over the Pennsylvania border in Columbus Township as "injection wells."
The County has been involved in this matter for well over six months since it learned that a company was working to secure use of these old natural gas wells as locations to pump millions of gallons of Marcellus shale wastewater from the drilling operations in Pennsylvania into the ground in what is called "deep well injection."
While many issues are involved in this proposal, the road posting is quite easily understood. The information we received was that 12 tanker trucks per day, six days a week for five years would be traveling from Pennsylvania onto Chautauqua County roads to reach the location where they would unload the wastewater right at the border of New York and Pennsylvania.
This additional heavy traffic would result in premature failure of Chautauqua County highways. While our roads are well built, they were not designed or engineered to withstand this additional punishment and as a result damage would occur and costs would result for the repair or replacement of the roads.
All highway users exceeding the weight posted limit should contact the Department of Public Facilities at 661-8400 and apply for an overweight permit. Anyone with special concerns or impacts from this posting may contact Department of Public Facilities Director George Spanos at 753-4211.