Heavy truck traffic begins as
soon as a Marcellus gas well site is developed. First, heavy
excavation equipment must be hauled in to grade the access road and
level a multi-acre drilling pad. Then trucks haul in hundreds of
tons of crushed stone for final construction of the road and
Multiple tractor-trailer loads are then required to haul in the
various parts of the drill rig, while later hauling away these same
parts from the gas well site. The largest volume of
begins with the hydraulic fracturing of gas wells, especially if
more than one well is fracked at the same time.
Frac pumps, holding tanks, tanker trucks and a wide variety of
support trucks and equipment eventually crowd the frac site. During
fracking, tractor-trailer loads of sand are continually delivered to
the Marcellus well site.
indicate it can take anywhere from 400 to 1,300 truck
trips to complete one gas well. There are seven gas
wells on this site.
Truck traffic will continue as the
condensate tanks are periodically drained and the gas
wells are maintained. This amount of heavy truck traffic
damages roads and also contributes greatly to the
creation of ground level ozone.
Once the frac is complete, scores
of trucks from service companies arrive to complete the gas
wells. Finished wells require regular visits from well tenders and
other service equipment. One Denton, Texas study determined that for
all three phases of a gas well -- drilling, fracing, and maintenance
-- approximately 592 one-way truck trips were required per well.
Some individual trucks weighed as much as 80,000 to 100,000 lbs when
These projects resemble industrial operations, so state, county and
local roads take a real pounding. Municipalities are well advised to
Bond their roads prior to drilling activities, so the roads can be
repaved once these major activities are completed. Below are photos
of secondary blacktop roads on Marcellus Shale that have been
pummeled by heavy truck traffic to a rural drilling site.