Dr A. N. James and Mr A. L. Little write: Dr Fookes and his co-authors are to be congratulated on a valuable and interesting paper which is similar to work in Saudi Arabia for which the writers of this present discussion were responsible during 1977 and 1978. The present writers were concerned with geotechnical aspects of certain structures being designed for the Royal Commission of Jubail and Yanbu, under whose authority the very large Jubail Industrial Complex was being constructed.

Many of the structures were to be situated on the sabkha areas near Jubail and Al abd Allahand on the Arabian penninsula some 25 km north of the sabkha Al Riyas which has been briefly described by Johnson et al. (1973). The present authors had access to extensive investigations of the Jubail sabkha area made by a number of different organizations including: Al-Muhandis Nizar Kurdi, Arabian Engineering Bureau, Sir Alexander Gibb & Partners, Dames and Moore & Basil Geotechnics, Binnie & Partners, Consulting Engineering Office Soilmafco, Pacific Consultants Inc. and Saudi Fugro Ltd. Information available from these investigations was used during the design stages of a variety of large and small structures with different load bearing and settlement requirements.

During the review stages of the project it became apparent that effects of artesian water were an important consideration for all the foundation designs. This aspect of foundation design and construction on sabkha has received very little attention previously although it is mentioned briefly byOwles and Bowman (1981). The artesian pressures

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