TV: “Smell of gas and soot” covers area by sinkhole — Officials furious over communication breakdown (VIDEO)

Published: September 26th, 2012 at 10:03 am ET


Title: Residents, local leaders say Texas Brine is not communicating
Source: WAFB
Author: Cheryl Mercedes
Date: Sept 26, 2012

Some Louisiana and Assumption Parish leaders are furious over what they perceive as a communication breakdown related to the massive sinkhole.


The latest findings on the slurry in Bayou Corne were sent to news media just after 10:30 p.m. Monday


The smell of gas and soot cover the swampy channels in Assumption Parish.


John Boudreaux, director of the Assumption Parish Office of Emergency Preparedness, said he did not find out [that Texas Brine claimed the salt cavern collapse was caused by seismic activity] until Tuesday morning.

“It was very surprising to find that they sent a press release without informing us first,” Boudreaux said.


Texas Brine spokesman Sonny Cranch: “We post these statements on the website, literally every day.”

Yet, no press release was posted on their website until some time long after 10:30p CDT, when the company’s statements “were sent to news media”.

Our report on this breaking news was published around 12:30a CDT (1:30a EDT) late Monday evening, and did not include a press release from Texas Brine, because no press release was available on their website as of that time.

Published: September 26th, 2012 at 10:03 am ET


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13 comments to TV: “Smell of gas and soot” covers area by sinkhole — Officials furious over communication breakdown (VIDEO)

  • Usefulbreather

    Does this mean that the approximately 20 sites of bubbling methane as far as a mile from the well are being caused by the well's failure?

  • dosdos dosdos

    Here is Texas Brine's web page for storage of materials in salt caverns.

    Note that the language used on the page remains intentionally vague. It is, in short, an invitation for those with fracking sludge issues to contact them for removal services.

    That they sealed off the wells a couple of years ago speaks volumes. They knew what was going on back then, and went into damage control mode. (Who, me?)

  • jec jec

    Call them American TEPCO!

  • harengus_acidophilus

    This is a good lesson for local "authorities".
    If anything looks fine, you're a honorable member of the society, if it went wrong, you're an expandable piece of sold meat.

    "We, the people" are knowing this feeling very well.


    • Maggie123

      Agreed, harengus_acidophilus! It's past time for locals, (in all communities), who actually mean to serve, to clear their heads any notion that they are buddies with corporatists.

      People who thought themselves 'safe' because they were "part way up the ladder" find themselves, when the crunch comes, kicked down to join most of humanity, located in a growing pile accumulating at the bottom.

      In one way it's kind of sad – they've held to a belief, often with great sincerity, that social critics are rabble-rousing "communists", that a "true American" would never question excessive scramble for profit, or identify any aspects of the system as corrupt.

      In another way, the sooner they have experiences that help them see how the system is geared – the better.

      Martin Luther King Jr: "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Sometimes people have to learn this "experientially".

      "from honorable member to expendable piece of sold meat" is very good!

      • Maggie123

        I *am* pleased to hear fairly firm language used by local officials as they speak about their expectations for Texas Brine. It's good that they are specific, list aloud and describe, failures of TB to take responsibility.

        A quote I've posted before and will probably post again: "All of humanity is in peril of extinction if each one of us does not, now and henceforth, dare to tell always only the truth, and all the truth, and to do so promptly β€” right now." (R. Buckminster Fuller, "Critical Path", 1981)

  • moonshellblue moonshellblue

    Fracking in PA Marcellus Shale concerns me and has reached massive fracking in our state polluting the water, etc. Governor Corbett basically won the election by allowing these companies to frack tax free. Difficult to say who Texas Brine has in their pocket perhaps no one but it seems they are running away from this potential catastrophe by not supporting the local community.

    • Maggie123

      moonshellblue: "won the election by allowing these companies to frack tax free" … this sadly seems "the way of things", even after so much evidence of fracking related water-poisoning is available.

      My state (CO) is already fracking away but it may get worse before it gets better. I don't know Corbett's history with ALEC and similar groups but I sure see evidence of ALEC type influence arriving with my daily mail.

      Every day on behalf of a conservative candidate – large, multi-ink colored, glossy cards (expensive and *definitely* not 'green' by paper or by ink!) The candidate promises he'll do what's right for veterans (a good trigger word) and for the region's economy (one of the other prize trigger phrases).

      The environment and specific economic issues aren't mentioned. (In fact 'trigger words' carry the message, there's almost nothing specific but his name!) There no contact info inviting me to "tell him what's on my voter mind".

      Today's mail brought a new twist – an 2nd large glossy, etc., card in addition to the regular "all about him" card. This new card denounces his opponent. That's all it does! It's from a "non-profit" "pro-America" group of some kind.

      The guy's got extra money behind him – I've no doubt of it.

  • Maggie123

    I don't get the "soot" smell. Wouldn't have expected it. (?)

    • CBuck CBuck

      Maggie, I was wondering about the soot smell myself. What would cause it? Some strange chemical reaction? Is something burning down there? If so I would assume there would be smoke and ash. It's all very curious so far, but then again I'm sure we aren't getting the whole story here.

  • irhologram

    Possibly the soot is from the burn off one of these threads announced days ago. At the time, I thought: Geez! Don't light a match to acetone, butane, et al! But as I think about it further, I realize that if they don't burn it off immediately as it surfaces, it would accumulate in the air, gain combustion strength, and then … KABOOM!

    Also, in today's releases here, bubbling has been found three miles from the sink hole, and in another, part of a road has been "taken". I would suggest the new perimeter of peril is at least 3 miles across and seems likely to collapse, as well, yielding 3 miles of potential combustible material to open air (oxygen needed to burn) exposure. Can they burn off an area 3 miles across? Hope so.

  • kalidances

    St.Martin(both), St.Mary, Terrebonne,Lafourche,St.James,Ascension,Iberia, Iberville,Livingston, East Baton Rouge, St.John the Baptist, and Ascension need to evacuate-right now. They need to use a regular public access channels on college or community radio stations so everyone can hear.

    This is going to divide Louisiana and Texas permanently. This is a nightmare.