PLAQUEMINE, La. (BRPROUD) — The Dow Chemical plant in Plaquemine was rocked by multiple explosions on Friday, July 14. The explosions were also felt by a seismometer inside Nicholson Hall on LSU’s campus.
Darrell Henry, professor and chair of the LSU Department of Geology and Geophysics said, “The seismometer did record a signal that was consistent with the explosion at the DOW plant.”
LSU’s campus is six miles from the Dow Chemical plant.
“That means it would take about 29 seconds for the sound wave to arrive at LSU and the seismometer,” according to Henry.
The seismograph reading is in Mountain Time because it was “extracted by Patricia Persaud who was a former LSU geology professor and now at the Univ. of Arizona,” according to Henry.
Henry provided a copy of the seismograph reading from that event.
So what does the reading show?
Henry said, “The reading shows the ground motion that was generated with the arrival of the sound wave from the explosion. Because the Dow plant was 6 miles away the fact that it was picked up on the seismometer indicates there was a large amount of energy in the sound wave.”
How did the explosion at the Dow Chemical plant compare to the reading that was registered during the Garth Brooks concert?
Henry said the “Dow explosion event was sharp and then tapered off,” while the reading for the Garth Brooks concert lasted the entirety of Callin’ Baton Rouge.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating what happened at the Dow Chemical plant.