April 6, 2013 The Mayflower spill Arkansas
MAYFLOWER, AR — “It’s like we weren’t considered at all,” she said, looking past bright orange cones to workers in a clearing within sight. “This house sits right next to it [the pipeline]. We should have been told something by now. “
Excavation machinery, pavers, and Exxon workers suddenly arrived at Snuggs Circle and Northside Drive on Tuesday, according to Jennifer Jarrell.
“They didn’t say anything to us,” she said. “We saw the big CAT machinery come in, they start building all of this stuff, but they don’t even stop by to say ‘Oh, by the way’.”
Jarrell saying she had no notification of the work that was about to begin. And the lights and continuous noise has kept her and her four-month-old son awake.
“I didn’t think there would be a lot of problems back here,” she said. “I mean, the subdivision is over there. That’s where all the trucks and police and everything have been. “
But now, police officers are posted up behind her home. Those officers told us the entire area from the road to the woods, which includes Jarrell’s home, was a place we weren’t allowed.
“They haven’t told us this is restricted area for media acces,” Jarrell said. “They haven’t told us anything. And people should be able to talk. Last time I checked, we still live in America.”
Exxon-Mobil officials told KARK this is the site of the Pegasus Pipeline rupture, which will require excavation and removal of oil over the coming days to make repairs, pending federal approval of the plan.
“Nobody said anything about this to us,” Jarrell said. “Should we evacuate? Should we take precautions? “
Cones now line Jarrell’s driveway, and a new sign has been posted to warn of a petroleum pipeline, which she’s smelled for the past week.
“The smell was putrid — awful,” she said. “With Little Man here, I don’t even want the doors open even until yesterday.”
As work gets underway, Jarrell hopes everything goes as planned, so the oil spill doesn’t hit any closer to home.
“What happens if something happens when they’re trying to pump it up, and we have to be evacuated anyway?” she said. “I hope Exxon gets their act together to let us know what we need to do.”