Mine Subsidence Study and Remedial Design, Scranton, Pennsylvania

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Overview: Deep room-and-pillar mines have been active in Pennsylvania’s coalfields since the late 1700s. Sinking of the ground surface above the mines occurs as long troughs or local circular potholes attributed to the failure or punching of coal pillars or the collapse of mine roofs, respectively. GeoStructures provided services for the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission to investigate a collapsing shoulder problem near Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Historic mining documents and old maps were obtained from the Office of Surface Mining (OSM) to study a dangerous collapsing shoulder problem along the Northeast Extension near Scranton, Pennsylvania. The records placed a vertical mineshaft in the area. A deep core boring program conducted by GeoStructures verified the feature as a partially backfilled, 120-ft deep shaft. Careful consideration of various remedial options in terms of feasibility and disruption to traffic flow resulted in the selection of a compaction-grouting repair. Photo shows geologic mapping along the Northeast Extension in the 1950s (PA Turnpike Commission Archives).

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