According to officials in Imperial County, California, a bubbling, geyser-looking mud pot is growing at an incredible pace and is now in dangerous proximity to railroad tracks, federal Highway III and optic cables.
"It's a slow-moving disaster," Alfredo Estrada, Imperial County's fire chief and emergency services coordinator, told the Los Angeles Times. Last month, the county decided it was high time that it proclaimed an emergency for the affected area.
In an interview with KYMA-TV, Estrada shared that the worrisome geyser is “encroaching on the railroad, also encroaching on the Kinder Morgan pipeline.” “And there [sic] some fiber optic out there and the highway,” he said.
Although the mud pot has been active since 1953, it didn’t previously pose as much danger as it does now, having recently galloped nearly 60 feet to the west in just one day. Just to compare, it earlier covered the same distance over the span of several months.
Meanwhile, multiple attempts to stop or stall the geyser haven’t fully worked, Live Science wrote, citing an underground wall specially constructed to block the mud, as well as vain draining efforts, including loose stone. The prospects don’t sound bright: the spring is operating like “a slow-moving sinkhole,” as deep as 40 feet, to date, the edition noted.
Yet, there is at least some uplifting news: the mud pot located near the southern end of the San Andreas Fault appears to have no relation to “any seismic activity,” the LA Times quoted US Geological Survey geophysicist Ken Hudnut as saying.