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Oil Seeping from Ground in Parent's Back Yard
Self | 03/21/05 | Laurel Barney

Posted on 03/19/2005 4:50:11 PM PST by The Grim Freeper

Today, my mother asked me to come see something in their Los Gatos back yard. She took me out to the corner of their large lot (large for Los Gatos, anyway), and she pointed out to me some black, shiny substance seeping out of the ground in patches, and along a line about 10 feet in length. The last heavy rain had made this substance come to the surface.

I said "It looks like oil," and she said she thought so, too. I stuck my finger in it, and it was black, slick, and after I'd rubbed it around to almost a drying point, a little bit gunky. Like crude oil.

We know my parent's property sits on a water table, because the last big earthquake, they weren't anxious to sit in the house, so they sat on the ground, and the ground was all wet (even though it hadn't rained in months).

Also, the heavy rains have caused a number of cracks to appear and/or widen in the brick work and driveway and porches and patios of my parents older home. We definitely are expecting a "big one." We just don't know when, of course. We weathered the Loma Prieta earthquake with a minimum of property damage and some major "rattled" nerves.

But all that is to say, has anyone here ever heard of such a thing? Could crude oil be seeping to the ground surface due to the heavy rains? Could it be something else? If it's oil, what do we do? Do we report it?


TOPICS: Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: blackgold; environment; faultline; ground; heavyrain; leonardcrawley; oil; seeping; texastea
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I am not asking because I think we've struck it rich. I don't believe my parents, even though they've owned the property since 1972, have mineral or water rights. But I'm not sure.

Just wondering. Hoping we can bring gas prices down in the Bay Area, I guess...

1 posted on 03/19/2005 4:50:15 PM PST by The Grim Freeper
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To: The Grim Freeper

Grim move away from there. California is the place you ought to be.


2 posted on 03/19/2005 4:51:56 PM PST by DouglasKC
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To: The Grim Freeper

Swimmin' pools, movie stars...


3 posted on 03/19/2005 4:52:05 PM PST by dfwgator (It's sad that the news media treats Michael Jackson better than our military.)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Are you gonna be a Beverly Hillbilly now?


4 posted on 03/19/2005 4:52:08 PM PST by anniegetyourgun
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To: The Grim Freeper

Not to burst your bubble... You might want to smell the ooze. I bet somebody's septic tank leech line is broken. Flush some dye marker tabs down the commode to see if it comes from the folk's house...


5 posted on 03/19/2005 4:53:06 PM PST by chadwimc
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To: anniegetyourgun

I should have expected this. (Snort.)


6 posted on 03/19/2005 4:54:03 PM PST by The Grim Freeper
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To: anniegetyourgun

He wasnt "a shootin' at some food guys".


7 posted on 03/19/2005 4:54:27 PM PST by SQUIDMACK
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To: The Grim Freeper

Seriously, I hope this doesn't cause problems for them....especially with enviros who will place some endangered animal on their property and try to stop them from doing anything with their own property.


8 posted on 03/19/2005 4:55:34 PM PST by anniegetyourgun
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To: The Grim Freeper

If I were in that situation of course I'd like to have it checked out to find out what it is. Not too sure about your county, but if you were over here in Santa Cruz County, they'd probably use it as an excuse to bulldoze the house. With no compensation, of course.


9 posted on 03/19/2005 4:55:36 PM PST by EggsAckley
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To: The Grim Freeper

http://www.jdcjr.us/index5.html

MOODY- David B. Moody was born in Indiana in 1836. As a boy, he crossed the plains, in the first wagon train through the Tejon Pass. With his brothers he engaged in flour milling with headquarters in San Jose. He was also part owner in the Caldwell Oil Srtike in 1872, above Los Gatos, still known as Moody Gulch, or to CHP as Moody Curve. The oil was of "Pennsylvania" quality and was piped to the now extinct town of Alma, then shipped by rail to Alameda. The strike dwindled out in 1922. Moody was also President of San Jose Woolen Mills and a promoter of The Vendome Hotel, both long gone.


10 posted on 03/19/2005 4:55:53 PM PST by SteveH (First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win.)
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To: The Grim Freeper
Are you gonna pack up and move to California Like Jet Clampett did?

Sorry, I couldn't resist

11 posted on 03/19/2005 4:55:55 PM PST by Kaslin (If the left is against it, then I am for it!!!)
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Comment #12 Removed by Moderator

To: chadwimc
That was the second thing I thought of, after oil, but there is no smell. It is not sewage.

The ground dried a bit and I just went back to look at it again. It seeped back into the ground, but it is still black in those patches where it had oozed up before--just not glistening.

13 posted on 03/19/2005 4:56:55 PM PST by The Grim Freeper
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To: The Grim Freeper
Well, the first thing you know ol Grim Freepers a millionaire...

Don't let any of the Libs know....You probably have some insignificant creature on your property that needs to be protected.
14 posted on 03/19/2005 4:56:59 PM PST by Dallas59 ("F--- Saddam. Were taking him out." -- George Bush, March 2002)
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To: The Grim Freeper

...Up through the ground came a bubble and crude, Oil that is, Black Gold, Texas Tea....


15 posted on 03/19/2005 4:57:07 PM PST by demlosers (Soylent Green is made in Florida)
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To: The Grim Freeper

The Le Brea tar pits come to mind.

Oil can definitely come up through the ground.


16 posted on 03/19/2005 4:58:02 PM PST by federal
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To: The Grim Freeper

17 posted on 03/19/2005 4:58:13 PM PST by itsamelman (“Announcing your plans is a good way to hear God laugh.” -- Al Swearengen)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Didn't I see something like this in "What a Way to Go?"


18 posted on 03/19/2005 4:58:24 PM PST by eccentric (a.k.a. baldwidow)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Just don't let the envirowackos/Democrats know. They might declare the rest of your property a national park and forbid you from drilling.

19 posted on 03/19/2005 4:59:47 PM PST by The South Texan (The Democrat Party and the leftist (ABCCBSNBCCNN NYLATIMES)media are a criminal enterprise!)
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To: The Grim Freeper

In the 1880's, Col. Drake hit oil (awl, to you Aggies) in Pennsy at 79 feet.

You've exceeded the good Colonel's record by 79 feet.

And I'll bet you weren't even shootin' at some food, when up from the ground came a bubblin' crude (awl, that is).

Live near Coal Oil Point, do you?

I wouldn't plan a move to Beverly Hills in the near future.


20 posted on 03/19/2005 4:59:51 PM PST by Ole Okie
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To: The Grim Freeper

Take everything I say below on a tentative level: I am only a law student, and not a very good one at that; please check with a licensed attorney for a better understanding of the issues.

If your parents own the property, then they own everything below ground and (to a certain extent) above ground. If there is in fact a deposit underground, it is theirs (unless the deed makes clear exceptions otherwise, which is doubtful).

I would suggest that you contact an energy law attorney in the area. He would probably have contacts in the energy field that could inspect your parents' land to determine if there is a deposit, and if so, how much. They could then go from there if they decide to form a company to market the oil (I'm sure there would be plenty of drilling companies who could be contracted to pump the oil--it's probably not a large deposit, so it might not even be worth it).

Again, bear in mind that I might be totally wrong. Please contact a real lawyer before taking any real action. Here's hoping you've struck it rich!


21 posted on 03/19/2005 5:00:09 PM PST by Cyclopean Squid (History remembers only what was, not what might have been.)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Black Gold.


22 posted on 03/19/2005 5:01:23 PM PST by Supernatural (All the truth in the world adds up to one big lie! bob dylan)
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To: The Grim Freeper
Come and listen to a story about a man named Jed. A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed, Then one day he was shootin at some food, And up through the ground came a bubblin' crude. Oil that is, black gold, Texas tea.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Well the first thing you know ol' Jed's a millionaire, Kinfolk said Jed move away from there-- Said Californy is the place you ought to be, So they loaded up the truck and moved to Beverly. Hills, that is. Although, it is probably septic tank leaching from somewhere, sorry.

23 posted on 03/19/2005 5:01:23 PM PST by CitizenM (An excuse is worse and more terrible than a lie, for an excuse is a lie guarded. Pope John Paul II)
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To: itsamelman

"Granny? That possum stew ready yet?"


24 posted on 03/19/2005 5:01:42 PM PST by B Knotts
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To: The Grim Freeper; SortaBichy; Delmont
It seeped back into the ground, but it is still black in those patches where it had oozed up before--just not glistening.

They just need to draw their blinds at night....sounds like they only had an "excitable prowler" who downloaded on his way out.

25 posted on 03/19/2005 5:01:57 PM PST by ErnBatavia (ErnBatavia, Boxer, Pelosi, Thomas...the ultimate nightmare Menage a Quatro)
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To: The Grim Freeper
Black gold! Texas tea! Drill now!



D'oh! Nevermind, the liberals in Los Gatos aren't going to let you drill. Probly make your place some type of "wildlife preserve".
26 posted on 03/19/2005 5:02:44 PM PST by advance_copy (Stand for life, or nothing at all)
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To: The Grim Freeper



There you are!
27 posted on 03/19/2005 5:02:45 PM PST by dagoofyfoot
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To: Dallas59
Well, the first thing you know ol Grim Freepers a millionaire...

Should we ping JimRob??....maybe we won't have to go through the Freepathon thingie next quarter.

28 posted on 03/19/2005 5:03:48 PM PST by ErnBatavia (ErnBatavia, Boxer, Pelosi, Thomas...the ultimate nightmare Menage a Quatro)
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To: The Grim Freeper

29 posted on 03/19/2005 5:04:34 PM PST by Samurai_Jack (ride out and confront the evil!)
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To: The Grim Freeper
Oil can come to the surface. That was the way it used to be harvested until we figured out how to dig wells.

Might want to make sure there is not a oil pipeline running under the property though. You could have a serious problem rather then a bonanza.

30 posted on 03/19/2005 5:05:50 PM PST by Harmless Teddy Bear ( We're all doomed! Who's flying this thing!? Oh right, that would be me. Back to work.)
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To: The Grim Freeper
Could crude oil be seeping to the ground surface due to the heavy rains?

Certainly, happens all over the planet. OTOH, it could be somebody buried a barrel of oily waste some years back.

31 posted on 03/19/2005 5:06:04 PM PST by RightWhale (Please correct if cosmic balance requires.)
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To: The Grim Freeper; Carry_Okie; forester; sasquatch; B4Ranch; SierraWasp; hedgetrimmer; ...
Carry has some interesting theories on this. If we suck it up commercially from wells, it won't seep to the surface etc.
32 posted on 03/19/2005 5:06:14 PM PST by farmfriend ( Why oh why didn't I take the blue pill?!?)
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To: The Grim Freeper

And the next thing you, ole Jed's a millionaire.


33 posted on 03/19/2005 5:06:33 PM PST by Excuse_My_Bellicosity (Say no to gun-control.)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Check the property discription and see if the mineral rights come with the property. In Texas they do. But I don't know about CA.


34 posted on 03/19/2005 5:07:02 PM PST by marty60
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To: The Grim Freeper
I stuck my finger in it, and it was black, slick

Black gold, Texas tea...

35 posted on 03/19/2005 5:07:22 PM PST by Excuse_My_Bellicosity (Say no to gun-control.)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Cows, in Berkeley? Oil, in Los Gatos?


36 posted on 03/19/2005 5:07:25 PM PST by sourcery (Resistance is futile: We are the Blog)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Better start putting it in barrels now before the enviro-freaks have your parents evicted and property siezed.


37 posted on 03/19/2005 5:08:22 PM PST by TADSLOS (Right Wing Infidel since 1954)
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To: The Grim Freeper

Click here

38 posted on 03/19/2005 5:08:23 PM PST by e_engineer
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To: RightWhale
Check your property deeds.

If you don't own the mineral rights you could wind up with a drilling rig in the back yard.

Suggest you trade the SUV for a diesel....will run on raw oil with some modifications.

39 posted on 03/19/2005 5:09:19 PM PST by spokeshave (Strategery + Schardenfreude = Stratenschardenfreudery)
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To: The Grim Freeper

somebody buried a 1963 mercury there in the back yard..it has been leaking oil all these years, but it just now has let enough out for it to come to the surface.


40 posted on 03/19/2005 5:10:41 PM PST by cajun-jack
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To: The Grim Freeper

Also, watch out for "BURNS SLANT DRILLING CO." trucks next door.


41 posted on 03/19/2005 5:11:17 PM PST by B Knotts
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To: The Grim Freeper; Dog Gone; BOBTHENAILER
"But all that is to say, has anyone here ever heard of such a thing? Could crude oil be seeping to the ground surface due to the heavy rains?"

Oil is lighter than rock, sand, and water. It naturally seaps up and pollutes the surface, that's why you have the La Brea Tar Pits in downtown Los Angeles, for instance.

Natural oil seapage is the world's largest polluter of crude; if you don't drill and remove the oil, eventually it winds up on the surface, polluting on its own.

42 posted on 03/19/2005 5:11:48 PM PST by Southack (Media Bias means that Castro won't be punished for Cuban war crimes against Black Angolans in Africa)
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To: chadwimc
They should get a survey history of the properly.
Is it a individual home ? or in a development ?
What was there BEFORE the house(s) were built ?
Are there any archives in the county library or county register to check on the history of the property ? to check and make sure it was not some kind of industry there before the house(s) were built ? Need to make sure it might not be old drums of ( what ever ) oil underground.
If it is truly a crude oil reserve under the properly, get the rights, permits, certificate for Mineral Rights as soon as possible.
Find a HONEST ( if that is possible in todays world ) lawyer.
43 posted on 03/19/2005 5:12:09 PM PST by Prophet in the wilderness (PSALM 53 : 1 The ( FOOL ) hath said in his heart , There is no GOD .)
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To: marty60
Check the property discription and see if the mineral rights come with the property. In Texas they do. But I don't know about CA.

Man I live in the middle of the east Texas oil field and I also worked in real estate for years and you will never get mineral rights on land around here. They have been seperated for decades, I would imagine that CA is the same since there is so much oil around southern California.

44 posted on 03/19/2005 5:12:24 PM PST by federal
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To: The Grim Freeper

Yer gonna need some 'possum recipes.


45 posted on 03/19/2005 5:13:05 PM PST by 4thInfVet (Howard Dean, the gift that keeps on giving!)
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To: spokeshave

Most people have surface rights only. Subsurface rights can be gotten, maybe.


46 posted on 03/19/2005 5:13:35 PM PST by RightWhale (Please correct if cosmic balance requires.)
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To: farmfriend; The Grim Freeper
It could be any of the above... the old mechanic who taught me much of what I know had a specially set aside corner in his yard where he poured & then buried motor oil. A high water table would force something like that to the surface.

BTW, check your deed for any strange "mineral rights" clauses-- a house I bought years ago for The Front Porch ( one of my stores ) had a specific clause which meant that any oil, gas, or valuable minerals were not mine, but reverted to the former owner. Didn't mean a damn thing in practice, since no such deposits existed, but the seller was covering all his bases.

47 posted on 03/19/2005 5:15:18 PM PST by backhoe (-30-)
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To: Cyclopean Squid

The only thing I would add to your excellent commentary is that this family may be able to sell oil and/or mineral rights to their property while retaining the right to reside there.


48 posted on 03/19/2005 5:15:29 PM PST by OldFriend ("If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child might have peace." Thomas Paine)
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To: dfwgator
black gold,Texas tea
49 posted on 03/19/2005 5:17:37 PM PST by mdittmar (May God watch over those who serve to keep us free)
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To: Ole Okie

"You've exceeded the good Colonel's record by 79 feet."

Seeping oil is no recent phenominun. Back in the late 1800's oil threatened water holes in Oklahoma and Texas where cattlemen watered their herds.


50 posted on 03/19/2005 5:18:44 PM PST by lawdude (Liberalism is a mental disease.)
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