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Senator Robert Nichols: District 3
News Release
July 9, 2014
Contact: Sydni Mitchell
(512) 463-0103
Senator Nichols holds meeting with Railroad Commission on earthquakes

Nacogdoches, TX — Today, Senator Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville) held a meeting to discuss recent earthquakes around Timpson and Tenaha. Those present in the meeting included area residents, Ray Wilson from Representative Chris Paddie's office and staff from the Texas Railroad Commission, including Executive Director Milton Rister and newly hired Seismologist Dr. Craig Pearson.

"Over the past few months my office has been contacted by residents of Shelby County who have expressed concerns over the growing number of earthquakes in the area," said Nichols. "This meeting provided a first-hand opportunity for those from the area to illustrate their personal experiences and ask questions."

For several years, waste water from gas fracturing operations in Texas and Louisiana has been injected into Shelby County soil, much of it near the fault line. Residents believe this has contributed to the earthquakes.

Some of the issues brought forth in the meeting included costly property repairs caused by foundation damage, masonry damage, broken windows and more. Those affected believe their homeowner insurance would not cover the cost of repairs. Many voiced concerns over property values declining and worry they will not be able to sell their homes in the future.

"I appreciate the Railroad Commission taking the time to meet with these residents," Nichols said. "My hope is with the hiring of Dr. Pearson, the Railroad Commission will have additional resources to study and understand the cause of these earthquakes."