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Mine Fire Burning 16 Years In Eastern Pa. To Be Extinguished


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Mine fire burning 16 years in eastern Pa. to be extinguished

by WNEP/CNN Newsource

Mine fire (CNN Newsource).PNG

OLYPHANT, Pa. (WNEP) — Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection is set to begin putting out a fire near Scranton.

It's about time; it's only been burning for 16 years!

That's right!


The fire is in a coal mine more than 200 feet underground.

Officials think it started when someone started illegally burning garbage there.

After fighting the fire for two years, crews eventually built a 200-foot trench around the fire, hoping it would burn itself out.

Gerard Tully began fighting it in 2004 as a volunteer firefighter.

Now, as an Olyphant Borough Council member, he's helping by getting money together to fund what's required to put it out once and for all.

"Funding is the key,” Tully said. “You know, the money has been put aside, and we know it's secured money, so we know the fire will be extinguished this time."

Tully says it's important to extinguish the fire because it's putting pollutants into the air.

Residents will still have to deal with that for some time.

State officials say it will probably take until December of 2022 to complete the first stage of the project.                                                                                                                                   

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