Candor Man's Water Spews Gas

By WBNG News

July 22, 2010 Updated Jan 9, 2010 at 12:12 AM EDT

Candor, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Imagine bathing in gas.

That's what one Candor man claims he is forced to do everyday, after his water supply was polluted by natural gas.

Action News Reporter Leigh Dana has the story.

You can wash a pot with water and soap.

But Fred Mayer washes it with water and gas.

"I can wash my dishes and poach an egg at the same time," said Mayer.

That's because he says his water supply is polluted with natural gas.

"That well was drilled in 1964. We never ever had a problem with the water."

That was until two years ago.

"The fault is right here."

State environmental officials say the gas was created and released by nature.

But the Vietnam Veteran points fingers at natural gas company for drilling a few miles away in Spencer.

"Turned the water on and it started burping. My dad said we've got a problem with the pump or whatever. I said no dad, that's gas coming out of the ground."

And to prove it, Mayer likes to show off his favorite "magic trick," and pow - the water ignites with a flash.

And if you were to fill up a glass of water, you would never know that it was contaminated, because natural gas is odorless and colorless.

Mayer reported the find to the Department of Environmental Conservation in January 2009.

But it claimed the leak was fixed a month later.

"I've been awful curious about taking my sanitary well cap off my well and throwing a match down there. I'd betcha there'd be one...."you think your house would blow up?" "Maybe a lot of fire in the air."

But no matter how dangerous his property may be...

He says he plans to stay put.

In Candor, Leigh Dana, WBNG TV Action News.

The natural gas company Fortuna Energy denies any link to the problem.

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