Insane pictures of Russian potash mine disaster

Solikamsk-2 accident first implications: situation could worsen

After a statement made by one of the world’s largest potash producers and exporters Uralkali (MCX:URKA)(LON:URALL), first visual implications of Solikamsk-2 potash mine accident have been revealed.

A sinkhole with a diameter of 30-40 meters has been detected to the east of the Solikamsk-2 production site, at the area packed with summer cottages. There were no casualties reported so far.

30-40 meters diameter sinkhole near the Solikamsk-2 potash mine (source: V-kurse.ru).

Insane pictures of Russian potash mine disaster

30-40 meters diameter sinkhole near the Solikamsk-2 potash mine (source: V-kurse.ru).

Some experts do believe that producing Solikamsk-1 mine adjacent to flooded Solikamsk-2 mine, likely to be flooded also, but it will not happen soon since there are two safety barriers installed between mines, – a 20 meters concrete wall and a 200 meters pillar, which entirely consists of potassium salt (see picture below).
Insane pictures of Russian potash mine disaster
Cross-section of Solikamsk 1 and 2 mines. Source: V-kurse.ru


Potentially, fresh water could mix with the brine in a flooded mine, which in turn may create microfractures in a concrete wall by that time.
Tectonic fractures are other possible way water/brine mix may penetrate and dissolve protective pillar.
Theoretically, this process may take years, if it really happens.
We will continue to monitor Uralkali’s official statements in this regard.

Insane pictures of Russian potash mine disaster

Source: Infomine