Around Acadiana

Mar 6, 2014 11:22 PM by Kristen Holloway

Business Owner Recovers After Well Blowout

Evacuated because of the well blowout, 40 people in Acadia Parish are now back in their homes. According to State Police, crews capped the natural gas well just before noon Thursday. It had blown nine days ago on Highway 13 just south of Eunice.

Workers with the company "Black Creek Drilling" were working on the natural gas well, when they lost pressure, causing the blowout. The accident shut down roads and forced a mile-and-a-half evacuation zone.

Those roads are once again open, and the families are back home. For some, it's not quite business as usual.

It might seem like a waste, but Bubba Frey, owner of the Mowata store says he doesn't have a choice.

"You don't sit and think something like this was or could ever happen, which you know in an instance it does, and it just so happens across the street from me, and I had to deal with it," said Frey.

The store is not far from the well, and Frey was forced to close up shop. Nine days out of business, including a typically busy Mardi Gras.

"How do you put a dollar amount on stuff when you know that you were going to be busy because there were tourists that were going to come to Southwest, LA to participate in Mardi Gras?"

Frey says it will take him about 4-5 days to get back up and running, but he isn't wasting any time getting started.

"I'm going to open up tomorrow morning and sell. I have frozen boudin, and I have enough to get by for the next couple of days, but I have to check on some meat that I know at this point its not good. It will have to be documented thrown out," said Frey.

Representatives from Black Creek Drilling say they've met personally with all the evacuated residents to make sure they had somewhere to stay. In some cases they arranged for hotel rooms, and gave out pre-paid debit cards for out-of-pocket expenses.

In a statement, Black Creek Drilling says, "We regret the inconvenience related to this unfortunate, unforeseeable event, and we will continue our communication with all interested parties related to any outstanding issues."

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