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WILLISTON, N.D. — An early morning lightning strike caused a fire at a saltwater disposal well near the northwestern North Dakota town of Ross.

State Health Department environmental geologist Kris Roberts said lightening hit the well owned by Fort Worth, Texas-based Basic Energy Services at 4:30 a.m. Friday. He says fires were still burning as of 7:30 a.m. and that the site likely will be destroyed.

Roberts said one worker was on site at the time of the strike but was not injured.

Saltwater is a byproduct of oil production. It is between 10 and 30 times saltier than seawater and is disposed of in special wells.

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