Sinkholes, Sinkholes Everywhere!

Aug 13, 2017

SinkholesSinkholes have begun to appear in various places around the world in recent times. In the various places that sinkholes have appeared, odd occurrences have come up.

Sinkholes happen due to a combination of erosion and the drainage of water. They can be a few feet wide to large enough to swallow entire buildings. Many times, they happen without warning. This happened in Kentucky at the National Corvette Museum.

At the time the sinkhole appeared, there were over five thousand Corvettes on the scene. Many fans had gathered from around the country to see the Corvettes. Luckily, the 40 foot wide, 60 foot deep sinkhole opened when the museum closed, so no one was hurt. However, a few of the Corvettes fell into the hole, causing a million dollars in damages. Museum officials were not aware of the sinkhole previously.

How Sinkholes Occur

Sinkholes are quite curious occurrences. Two types of sinkholes exist: the kind that develop slowly over time and the kind that happen suddenly. The former are called cover-subsidence sinkholes and the latter are called cover collapse sinkholes. Both have the same basic cause.

Sinkholes happen in areas of land where water causes the dissolution of soluble bedrock. With cover-subsidence sinkholes, the exposed bedrock is slowly worn down and water-filled holes form. These holes often become ponds. With cover collapse sinkholes, this process occurs unseen, underneath soil or sediment. The hole becomes heavy and collapses on its own weight.

The Cause of Sinkholes

Unfortunately, a lot of the sinkholes that occur nowadays are indirectly caused by humans. They happen when man made constructions cause runoff to concentrate in one area. Most sinkholes occur locally and don’t cause a lot of harm. However, there have been major sinkholes that have caused deaths, such as one that happened in Guatemala City. This sinkhole managed to swallow a three-story building and kill fifteen people.

The sinkhole that occurred at the National Corvette Museum was a subsidence-collapse sinkhole. The cause was believed to be the existence of underground caves. The museum has decided to keep a portion of the sinkhole to attract visitors. An attempt will be made to repair the other portion.

Repairing and Preventing Sinkholes

Repairing a sinkhole can be a daunting task, especially if the hole is large. Once it has happened, a drastic undertaking of removing rubble and filling in the sinkhole must take place.

However, if there are signs of a sinkhole, it can be prevented. If the foundation is unstable, it can be stabilized to prevent the hole from sinking in further. Since sinkholes are often caused by humans, they can also be prevented with human intervention.

Engineered Solutions of Georgia does extensive work with sinkholes, such as repairing damage done by them and preventing them. Since sinkholes can occur anywhere, even in the home, it is best to rely on the service of Engineered Solutions of Georgia for any sinkhole related services.