Weatherford Democrat

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January 2, 2014

2013 in Review

A look back at 2013 through the year’s top stories as compiled by the WD staff

NUMBER ONE – Earthquakes shake up Parker County

An epidemic of low-magnitude earthquakes — mainly in northeast Parker County, raise questions about a link to the injection wells used by gas drillers to dispose of fracking waste. Scientists report the fluids — pumped into the wells under pressure — might release the natural stress built up on fault lines, triggering the quakes.

Citizens’ response to the ground shakers — which now number two dozen in the county and some 30 across the region including Tarrant and Palo Pinto counties — sent Parker County commissioners and others to the Texas Railroad Commission, which regulates the oil and gas industry, for answers.

A town hall meeting about the area ground shakers is set for 5 p.m. Thursday at Azle High School.

Industry experts are mixed on whether fracking, a process used to extract natural gas from the area’s layer of shale, or the subsequent injection of fluids and chemicals used in the fracking process back into the ground could be the cause for the area’s relatively mild earthquakes, most of them registering below 3.0 magnitude with several above that, as high as 3.6 magnitude. No injuries or significant property damage have been reported as a result of the series of quakes, which began in early November.

The U.S. Geological Survey and Southern Methodist University recently placed monitors in areas of northeast Parker County and have identified an area between Reno and Reno as the epicenter for the more recent earthquakes recorded, saying they are generally occurring at a considerably shallow depth of about 2-4 miles below ground level.

NUMBER TWO – Bearcats roll to another state football title

One word – domination.

That describes the Aledo Bearcats’ 2013 undefeated, record-setting football season that culminated with a Class 4A, Division II state championship on Dec. 22 at AT&T Stadium in a 38-10 win over the Brenham Cubs.

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  • 0729 one purple heart group.jpg A Purple Heart County

    County Judge Mark Riley and Parker County commissioners proclaimed Parker County to be a “Purple Heart County” Monday, honoring local veterans and their families in a special ceremony held in the second floor courtroom of the historic courthouse. 

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • WISD to propose tax rate decrease

    Weatherford ISD, which is projected to see a rise in property values, is proposing a one-cent tax rate decrease, which would slightly increase taxes for the average homeowner. 

    July 28, 2014

  • Israel Andrade Illegal indicted for burglary, child indecency

    A Parker County grand jury has indicted a man accused of breaking into a Springtown-area home earlier this month and molesting a sleeping 9-year-old girl.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_9754.jpg Home destroyed by fire

    WEATHERFORD – A fire that broke out Monday on the 700 block of Cimmaron Trail in Horseshoe Bend ended in the complete loss of a family’s home.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0727 one before-after.jpg Almost there...

    As a two-room schoolhouse with two school teachers conducting grades 1-9, the Mount Pleasant Colored School has had a humble beginning.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • Woman hit on interstate identified

    A woman killed early Friday morning while walking on Interstate 30 near the Parker - Tarrant county line has been identified as 29-year-old Ashley Wright of Weatherford, according to information released Saturday by the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office. 

    July 26, 2014

  • Five teens hospitalized after wreck

    Alcohol may have been involved in a wreck Wednesday near Brock that sent five teens to the hospital, including two with life-threatening injuries, according to information from the Texas Department of Public Safety. 

    July 25, 2014

  • Woman killed while walking on interstate

    A woman, who had not been identified as of Friday afternoon, was killed early Friday morning while walking on Interstate 30 near the Parker - Tarrant county line, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety. 

    July 25, 2014

  • Rates of the rise?

    As part of an ongoing discussion, the City of Weatherford Municipal Utilities Board Thursday was taken through part two of the rate-making process for the city’s proposed capital improvement plan. The result of this plan will have a direct impact on utility rates for city customers. 

    July 24, 2014

  • Hospital board moves closer to building ambulance station

    The Parker County Hospital District Board of Directors took steps Wednesday to advertise and accept bids for the construction of a Brock-area ambulance station. 

    July 24, 2014

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