Daily American: “Drilling impacts neighbors”


Drilling impacts neighbors

BAKERSVILLE — Not everyone in the Jefferson Township community is thrilled about their new 137-foot tall neighbor.

Jerri Rigo said she lives less than a quarter-mile from the drilling rig on the farm of Robert and Janet Miller. And she said she hasn’t slept well in three weeks.

“At night it’s horrible,” she said. “You can hear (the workers) screaming, clanging . . . it just gets louder and louder and louder all night long.”

Rigo has lived in her home for more than 12 years. She said she’s been saddened by an apparent disappearance of wildlife since drilling operations began.

“You used to see deer all the time in and around that field,” she added. “But they’re afraid.”

Rigo said she was approached by Chief Oil & Gas multiple times. But she said she had no interest in leasing her lone acre.

“It doesn’t seem worth the buck to me,” Rigo said. “I don’t want my hand in any of this.”

Another neighboring land owner had a similar take on the situation.

“I can’t remember when I slept a whole night last,” said Joann Layman, who also lives less than a quarter-mile from the rig. “We had so many vibrations we had to take pictures down off of the wall.

“It’s been miserable. It almost wears you down.”

Layman — who has in fact leased her land to Chief — said she was at least pleased to hear that drilling could conclude within a week.

“That would be the best news I had in years, actually,” she said.

Layman added that she feels the natural gas rush has had a negative impact on this quiet community.

“The sad thing is that it turns neighbors against neighbors.”