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Impact of the 1992–1993 winter storms on hydroconsolidation, differential settlement, and ground fissures, Murrieta area, southwestern Riverside County, California

By
Roy J. Shlemon
Roy J. Shlemon
P.O. Box 3066, Newport Beach, California 92659
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Mack Hakakian
Mack Hakakian
29489 Via Las Colinas, No. 227, Temecula, California 92592
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Published:
January 01, 1997

Abstract

The 1992-1993 winter storms in Murrieta, California, produced rainfall that exceeded 200% of normal. This water infiltrated into buried channels filled with up to 30 m of alluvium and thus added to rising water levels caused by accelerating urban runoff during the previous 5 yr. Downstream valleys in the California Oaks area of Murrieta, now modified to support golf courses, were little affected by the rainfall, for most of the underlying sediments had already been saturated. Upstream, however, nar-row alluvium-filled valleys were subjected to 3 to 4 m of groundwater-level rise in a 2-month period. Depending on local channel geometry and presence of fill loads, the 1992-1993 storms accelerated alluvial saturation, hydroconsolidation of collapsible soils, differential settlement, and formation of ground fissures. This combined natural and man-induced rise in regional groundwater levels damaged many houses and streets and locally impaired underground utilities. Alleged damages exceed $50 million, and litigation continues unabated. The Murrieta (California Oaks) hydroconsolidation, dif-ferential settlement, and ground fissures provide a case study of new challenges to the engineering geologist in California.

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Contents

GSA Reviews in Engineering Geology

Storm-Induced Geologic Hazards

Robert A. Larson
Robert A. Larson
Los Angeles County Department of Public Works 900 South Fremont Avenue Alhambra, California 91803
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James E. Slosson
James E. Slosson
Slosson and Associates 15500 Erwin Street, Suite 1123 Van Nuys, California 91411
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Geological Society of America
Volume
11
ISBN electronic:
9780813758114
Publication date:
January 01, 1997

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