Sinkhole 1 year mark approaching, officials report status

Early Friday morning parish workers discovered water and debris moving inside the containment berm area. Parish officials say this latest activity gives some insight into what's still going on below the surface.

This is another active day for the Assumption Parish sinkhole.

Water, debris and one side of the containment berm moving back and forth can be seen in a video taken by the Assumption Parish emergency workers.

"The sediment and some of the other things are shifting down through that damaged rock zone to the underground area. So that's what you saw---the big water shift back and forth. We've seen similar events happen in the past when you've seen a big shift of material down there," said Patrick Courreges, Department of Natural Resources spokesperson.

The blue ribbon commission, created at the request of Gov. Bobby Jindal and made up of scientists from around the world, is conducting an evaluation of the sinkhole separate from state agencies.

"One of the things we've asked them to look at is [getting] a grasp of the stability now and be able to make good predictions on what it will be in the future," said Courreges.

Courreges says the commission still has not been able to come up with a reasonable prediction of what could happen.

Assumption Parish Office Emergency Preparedness director John Boudreaux says this sinkhole's recent activity shows just how much more information all agencies involved need to find out before  lifting the 11-month long mandatory evacuation order.

"Some of the estimates---just to remove the gas to a safe level---it's going to take years to do at this current rate. So, no time in the near future would anything be changing," said Boudreaux.

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