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Pipeline break and lightning strike cause brine spills

WATFORD CITY – A brine spill occurred during a pipeline break about six and a half miles south of Watford City.

Most recent estimates indicate 35,700 gallons of brine were released on private property.

Operated by Tallgrass Energy, the company first discovered the spill on Monday.

Brine or produced water is a byproduct of oil production. It is typically carried from an oil well by pipeline or truck to a disposal site where it is injected back into the ground for permanent storage.

A brine spill also occurred Tuesday, resulting from a lightning strike at the Alfred Brown Saltwater Disposal owned by Bullrock, LLC, about five miles south of Keene.

The North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality was notified of both incidents.

Initial estimates indicate 34,440 gallons of brine were released at the Keene area site. The spill occurred on private agricultural property. At this time, no surface water was impacted.

Personnel from the Environmental Quality Department will be on site to monitor the investigations and remediations.

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