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Fri, 29 Jul 2016
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Sinkholes


Better Earth

Chinese researchers find world's deepest sinkhole found in South China Sea

© People's Daily
Chinese researchers claim to have found the world's deepest underwater sinkhole, located near the hotly disputed islands of the South China Sea.

Also known as a blue hole, it measures 300.89 meters (988ft) in depth, far surpassing the previous record held by Dean's Blue Hole in the Bahama Islands, which is 202 meters deep.

Measuring 130 meters in diameter, the hole was discovered at a major coral reef near the Paracel Islands, which both China and Vietnam have claims on, as part of an exploration project which ran from August 2015 until June.

Cloud Precipitation

Giant sinkhole emerges in Altai region of Russia after heavy flooding

© Via YouTube
Footage filmed on Wednesday shows the aftermath of heavy flooding which left a huge sinkhole on a road in the village of Baturovo in the Altai Region. No injuries were reported.

According to EMERCOM, 82 emergency service officers as well as 37 units of equipment are currently involved in the recovery works.


House

Several houses evacuated after 30-foot-wide (and growing) sinkhole opens in Tampa Bay, Florida

© Cox Media Group
Officials say they've evacuated several Tampa Bay area homes after a sinkhole opened up beneath one house.

Pasco Fire Rescue responded to the Holiday neighborhood Monday afternoon.

Chief Shawn Whited says they initially estimated the hole to be about 30 feet wide and 15 feet deep, but it was still growing. Firefighters evacuated the affected home, as well as four other surrounding houses. Whited says the structures will have to remain empty until an engineer can inspect the hole either later Monday or Tuesday.

Whited says the sinkholes can usually be stabilized and filled in.

No injuries were reported.

Comment: Sinkholes: The groundbreaking truth


Life Preserver

Swimming pool-sized sinkhole opens in Manchester, New Hampshire

© NH1

Residents are being asked to be careful with their water usage after a large water main break early Thursday morning.

The break happened on Bridge Street Extension between Christy Lane and Mission Avenue. The road has been closed since.

"It was like whitewater rafting, like a big dam let go. I guess it's one of the bigger ones with a lot of pressure," Christina Fogarty said.

A large pipe and one of the main arteries on Fogarty's Road flooded the entire Manchester neighborhood. One man shot footage on his cell phone of the water bubbling up from the ground just as crews were getting the water under control.

Crews are still trying to identify the cause of the break. "They don't know," said Bruce Gosselin, the field supervisor of Manchester highways. "It could be just a stress crack on a pipe, and it just decided to let go."

The roads buckled, and a sinkhole the size of a small swimming pool opened up as crews worked to repair the pipe and make the road accessible to local traffic. The process could take days.

Arrow Down

Tractor has near miss with 10-foot wide sinkhole in field at Rehobeth, Alabama

© JAY HARE / DOTHAN EAGLE
James and Kathy Harrell look over a sink hole that formed on their farm land recently.
A few feet to the right or left and James Harrell could have had a big problem on his hands.

Harrell discovered a 10-foot wide sink hole in his peanut field last week. Just a few days prior, a tractor had been plowing the field and just missed rolling over the area where the hole is located.

"If that tractor had been right here, it could have caved it," he said. "That would have been ugly."

This isn't Harrell's first experience with a sinkhole. About 40 years ago, Harrell drove a combine over a sinkhole on some farm property in Cottonwood.

"The frame of the combine was the only thing that kept it from falling all the way in the hole," he said. "I stepped out of the cab onto the roof and was on the ground."


Arrow Down

Baltimore Public Works inspector injured falling into widening sinkhole

© Fern Shen/Baltimore Brew
The latest victim of Baltimore's crumbling infrastructure was not just the free flow of traffic but the safety of an inspector examining the latest fallout from it - a large sinkhole that appeared on West Mulberry Street.

A longtime Department of Public Works inspector, on the scene of a collapsed portion of the road between Greene and Paca streets, fell into the hole Monday and was injured, according to DPW spokesman Kurt Kocher. "We thought he might have broken his leg, but I believe it's not broken," said Kocher, who was unable to provide further information on the injured employee, who was sent home from the hospital today.

© Baltimore Department of Public Works
Earlier photo (from Monday) of the sinkhole on Mulberry Street, near Paca Street, before it widened.
"The ground collapsed under him," DPW spokesman Jeffrey Raymond said, noting that the hole now stretches "from sidewalk to sidewalk."

Kocher said the sinkhole, roughly 30 feet deep and 40 feet in diameter, was discovered at the site of a 20-inch water main that was recently installed but had not been put into service.

The new water line was to replace an 8-inch main that had broken a few weeks ago and been repaired. "There might have been an additional undetected leach or void created under the road," said Kocher.

That portion of the west-east thoroughfare is covered with concrete. The leakage and erosion might have been detected more quickly if the road surface was asphalt and "the water came bubbling up," Kocher said. On the other hand, Kocher said a hole in the 80-inch sewer main, also located in that spot, could be the culprit. "That could explain where the soil has gone," he said.

Arrow Down

Forklift falls into sinkhole on sidewalk in Ganzhou, China


Forklift in sinkhole
A traffic camera in China captured the moment a sinkhole opened up in a sidewalk and partially swallowed a forklift.

The video, filmed Tuesday, shows the forklift driving across the brick walkway next to a road in Ganzhou, Jiangxi Province, when a sinkhole opens up underneath the vehicle.

The forklift was almost completely swallowed by the hole, but the driver was not injured.

Authorities said the cause of the walkway's collapse is being investigated.


Arrow Down

Sound 'like thunder' before huge sinkhole devours land just metres from homes near Carmarthen, Wales


The 30 foot wide hole has left a storage shed dangling over the edge
A Carmarthenshire couple's home has been left in a dangerous position after the ground collapsed just meters away from it.

Nearby residents of Towy View Park, off Capel Dewi Road, just outside Carmarthen, said they were woken by a sound like thunder before 7am today.

The sinkhole, approximately 30 foot wide and deep, took away part of the ground underneath an empty storage shed.


Towy View Park is built on the site of a former lead mine.

"It sounded like thunder," said a park resident this morning.

"I couldn't believe someone was doing DIY that early in the morning. But when I went out to walk my dog, I could see it. It's a real worry for us."

Hardhat

Enormous sinkhole damages car in Colorado Springs, Colorado

© The Gazette
Crews worked Sunday to repair a water main break near Garden of the Gods Road after gushing water caused a sinkhole that damaged a car.

Colorado Springs police say the broken pipe was noticed after 8 a.m. on the 4200 block of Northpark Drive, near Garden of the Gods and Interstate 25.

"One vehicle drove into the sink hole," police said in a news release. "There was minor damage to the vehicle and no injuries were reported."

Colorado Springs Utilities was called to fix the pipe.

"The roadway will be closed to vehicle traffic for several hours while they work on the water main break," police said.

Arrow Down

Sinkholes damage county, city roads in Hanford, California

© Mike Eiman/The Sentinel
Officials are asking drivers to stay vigilant as sinkholes start to take a toll on Kings County roads.

County road crews closed a section of Houston Avenue southeast of Hanford after a massive sinkhole opened Sunday night.

Kings County Roads Superintendent Tony Gomes said motorists discovered the sinkhole in the eastbound lane of Houston Avenue, just east of Sixth Avenue, around 9:30 p.m. County roads employees were called shortly after and found a hole that encompassed the entire lane.

Gomes said a big rig reportedly made it through the area unscathed Sunday night. One car got a flat tire, while a second car got three flat tires.

By Monday morning, the hole had grown to three or four times its original size. Gomes said both lanes of Houston Avenue will remain closed between Second and Sixth avenues until further notice. Motorists are being asked to use Highway 198 to bypass the affected area.

"I have never encountered this in 42 years," Gomes said. "We've had squirrel holes and gopher holes that have taken water from the high side of the road and caused erosion until finally the road will dimple down. But only a dimple, not a huge cavity."


Comment: Sinkholes: The groundbreaking truth