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General News    H2'ed 5/8/13

Bayou Corne Sinkhole: Micro-Earthquake Activity Halts Work

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This update is the 16th article in this Opednews series about the Bayou Corne sinkhole.

BACKGROUND: In Spring of 2012, Louisiana's Corne and Grand Bayou residents noticed strange bubbling in the bayou for many weeks, and they reported smelling burnt diesel fuel and sulfur. Suddenly a sinkhole the size of three football fields appeared on Aug. 3, swallowing scores of 100-foot tall cypress trees. The sinkhole resulted from the failure of Texas Brine Company's abandoned underground brine cavern. The Department of Natural Resources issued a Declaration of Emergency on Aug. 6, and 150 families were evacuated. 

For maps, diagrams and additional information, please see the fifteen previous installments in this series, listed at the end of this article.

Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
(Image by On Wings of Care (used with permission))
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NAPOLEONVILLE, LA: All work at the infamous Bayou Corne Sinkhole and adjacent areas has ceased until further notice due to an increase in seismic activity that may warn of another cave-in.

On May 5th the Assumption Parish Police Jury noted that "Seismic monitoring had detected a sustained increase in the trend of micro-earthquake (MEQ) activity in the area around the sinkhole and Oxy 3 over the past week, and a marked uptick in MEQs in the past day. This pattern of MEQ increase has been identified as an indicator of likely shifting and sloughing in the sinkhole and the area below it, based on past observations."

On May 7th the sinkhole experienced a "burp", and the police jury noted that "seismic monitors recorded a VLP (very long period seismic signal) at 3:24 a.m."

RMS Titanic departing Southampton on April 10, 1912.
RMS Titanic departing Southampton on April 10, 1912.
(Image by Public domain via wiki, Author: F.G.O. Stuart (1843-1923))
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A recent measurement of the sinkhole showed that it was nearly 100 feet longer than the 882-foot HMS Titanic, as the sinkhole currently measures at least 975 feet across.

(Composite image for illustrative purposes,  not to scale.)
(Composite image for illustrative purposes, not to scale.)
(Image by Collage by Meryl Ann Butler)
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According to CBS, Texas Brine Company's Vice President of Operations, Bruce Martin, says that the sinkhole could continue to grow for "another year or two."

Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
(Image by On Wings of Care (used with permission))
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On May 6, On Wings of Care made their seventh sinkhole flyover. Pilot Bonny Schumaker reported, "The pool of liquid did not seem too much larger than it appeared to us a month ago (April 2), but the dead and dying trees to the west were more evident. Appreciable amounts of rainbow sheen still cover the north and northeastern parts of the pool.

"Today the lighting on some ripples near center of the sinkhole gave an unusual foam-like appearance. We also noticed that while there was still much equipment placed all around the hole and especially near the birms and roads still under construction, there appeared to be little or no work in progress. This is consistent with reports of increased microearthquake and other seismic activity in the area during the past few days." 


Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
(Image by On Wings of Care (used with permission))
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Dr. Schumaker continued, "The recent rains have brought much water to the surrounding swampland" and made them look beautifully green. The tremendous amount of drilling in the area is more evident now than before."

Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
Bayou Corne Sinkhole by On Wings of Care
(Image by On Wings of Care (used with permission))
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She notes, "The hole and its surrounding new birms and roads take up an area that almost dwarfs the happy community that once thrived here just to the northwest! " (it)makes me think that before one should ever decide on a place for one's retirement home, a careful aerial survey is a must!  Because I'm not sure the people of Bayou Corne had any idea how many holes were drilled and still being drilled all around them, through soil, salt, and aquifers!"

Additional photos and a video by On Wings of Care are at click here

Previous articles in this series:
15. Haunting Video Shows Trees Descending into Bayou Corne Sinkhole (April 20, 2013.) click here

14. Experts Called in To Tackle Bayou Sinkhole Devastation (April 12, 2013.)  click here

13. Sinkhole Update: Explosive Gases Found in Adjacent Residences  (April 4, 2013) click here=164803&submit=Back

12. Bayou Sinkhole Update: Increased Seismic Activity, Access Ramp Caves In  (March 28, 2013) click here

11. Bayou Corne Sinkhole Swallows 25 More Trees (March 26, 2013) click here=164412&submit=Back

10. Over 90 "Micro" Earthquakes Overnight at the Bayou Corne Sinkhole (MAR. 13, 2013)  click here

9. Nightmare Sinkhole Out of Control,  Cave-ins Continue at Bayou Corne (Feb. 13, 2013) at click here

8. Just Released: Wildly Bubbling Gases Near Catastrophic Louisiana Sinkhole (Jan. 22, 2013) at click here

7. Gov. Jindal Ignores Sinkhole Disaster; Activists & Scientists Demand Assistance for Traumatized Residents (Jan. 20, 2013)  at click here

6. Sudden Seismic Activity in Louisiana Bayou: Sinkhole Burps, Pad Cracks, Police Copter Arrives UPDATED (Jan. 19, 2013) at  click here

5. Bayou Sinkhole Site Update: Flammable Tap Water (Nov. 2, 2012) at click here

4. Alarming Sinkhole Continues to Cave In: Seismic Activity, Odors, Health Symptoms Reported (Oct. 30, 2012) at click here

3. Mysterious Bayou Sinkhole Continues to Cave In: Radiation, Hydrocarbons Detected (Sept. 29, 2012) at click here

2. Dangerous Levels of Radium at Corne Bayou Sinkhole (Aug. 26, 2012)  at click here

1. Does Sudden Sinkhole Portend a Nuclear-sized Explosion? (Aug. 17, 2012) at click here.

 

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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)
 

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