The removal of an underground waste-oil storage tank in Mount Rainier National Park, at Longmire, Washington, led to the discovery that soil surrounding the tank was saturated with unidentified petroleum hydrocarbons. Subsequent investigations by the National Park Service indicated that a petroleum product smelling like diesel oil was present in the unsaturated zone as far as 120 feet from the tank site. A study was conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the National Park Service to determine the extent to which the petroleum hydrocarbons have affected the unsaturated zone and ground water in the Longmire area. Measurements of water levels in wells and of water-surface elevations of the Nisqually River and a wetland west of Longmire indicate that ground water does not flow from the maintenance area to the river or to the wetland. Waste oil and diesel oil were detected in soil samples from the site closest to the waste-oil storage-tank site. Diesel oil was also detected in samples from a site about 200 feet northwest of the storage-tank site. Organic compounds of undetermined origin were detected in soil samples from all of the other sites. Waste oil was not conclusively detected in any of the ground-water samples. Diesel oil was detected in water samples from the well closest to the storage tank and from a well about 200 feet west of the storage-tank site. Ground-water samples from all of the other wells contained organic compounds of undetermined origin.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Reconnaissance investigation of petroleum products in soil and ground water at Longmire, Mount Rainier National Park, Washington, 1990
Water-Resources Investigations Report
U.S. Geological Survey ;
Earth Science Information Center, Open-File Reports Section [distributor],