For more than two months, officials from federal to local have been unable to pin down the source of a natural gas leak and tremors in assumption parish.
But on Thursday a 200 by 200 foot "slurry area" has appeared in bayou corne in northern assumption parish...
The formation of the slurry area was accompanied by a diesel-like odor that some residents said burned their eyes and noses but dissipated by midmorning Friday...
Assumption parish officials declared an emergency and called for an evacuation of residents living near the nearly 1-acre muddy site.
A potential failure of a cavern operated by Texas brine company may have caused the slurry area, or sinkhole, which swallowed full-grown trees and denuded a formerly forested patch of cypress swamp.
Final determination of a positive link between the failure of the cavern and either the natural gas bubbling or the slurry area has not been made.
In response, gov. bobby jindal declared an emergency Friday.