Sinkhole progression at the Weeks Island, Louisiana, Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) site Metadata

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  • Main Title Sinkhole progression at the Weeks Island, Louisiana, Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) site


  • Author: Neal, J.T.
    Creator Type: Personal
  • Author: Bauer, S.J.
    Creator Type: Personal
  • Author: Ehgartner, B.L.
    Creator Type: Personal
    Creator Info: Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM (United States). Underground Storage Technology Dept.


  • Sponsor: United States. Department of Energy.
    Contributor Type: Organization
    Contributor Info: USDOE, Washington, DC (United States)


  • Name: Sandia National Laboratories
    Place of Publication: Albuquerque, New Mexico
    Additional Info: Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM (United States)


  • Creation: 1995-11-01


  • English


  • Content Description: A sinkhole measuring 11 m (36 ft) across and 9 m (30 ft) deep was first observed in alluvium overlying the Weeks Island, Louisiana, salt dome in May 1992, but it was about a year old, based on initial surface appearance and subsequent reverse extrapolation of growth rates. A second and much smaller sinkhole was identified in early 1995, nearly three years later. Their position directly over the edges of the SPR oil storage chamber, a former room-and-pillar salt mine, caused apprehension. The association of sinkholes over mines is well established and this occurrence suggested that groundwater influx undoubtedly was causing salt dissolution at shallow depth, and associated collapse of soil at the surface. Leaks of groundwater into other salt mines in Louisiana and elsewhere led to flooding and eventual abandonment (Coates et al., 1981). Consequently, much attention has been and continues to be given to characterizing these sinkholes, and to mitigation. This paper summarizes current engineering geologic concepts, and briefly describes diagnostic and risk mitigation efforts being conducted by the US Department of Energy, operator of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (Bauer et al., 1994).
  • Physical Description: 17 p.


  • STI Subject Categories: 02 Petroleum
  • Keyword: Strategic Petroleum Reserve
  • Keyword: Underground Storage
  • Keyword: Storage Facilities
  • Keyword: Salt Deposits
  • Keyword: Ground Subsidence
  • Keyword: Louisiana


  • Conference: Fall technical meeting of the Solution Mining Research Institute, Inc., San Antonio, TX (United States), 22-25 Oct 1995


  • Name: Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports
    Code: OSTI


  • Name: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
    Code: UNTGD

Resource Type

  • Article


  • Text


  • Other: DE96001759
  • Report No.: SAND--95-2294C
  • Report No.: CONF-9510188--1
  • Grant Number: AC04-94AL85000
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 119960
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc620914


  • Display Note: OSTI as DE96001759