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Sinkholes — The Danger Below Us

Logan Mock-Buntining, Getty Images

Can you imagine the ground below your feet giving way to be swallowed by the earth? I have in numerous nightmares. Seeing the coverage of the recent sinkholes is terrifying to watch. What is a sinkhole and why should you join me in fear of them? 

It is a tragedy that recently a Florida man lost his life to a sinkhole. Jeff Bush was sleeping in bed when the floor, his, bed, and himself were swallowed by the earth. If you haven’t heard this tragic story, ABC News explains in this video.

And, this horror story is not over. A second sinkhole, near the area where poor Jeff Bush lost his life, has opened. It is smaller and being taken as a less dangerous sink hole, but it is still scary.

All of this is absolutely heart stopping frightful. But, what are we scared of? What is a sinkhole?

Southwest Florida Water Management District defines sinkholes as, “[s]inkholes are depressions or holes in the land surface that occur throughout west-central Florida. They can be shallow or deep, small or large, but all are a result of the dissolving of the underlying limestone. Hydrologic conditions, including lack of rainfall, lowered water levels, or, conversely, excessive rainfall in a short period of time, can all contribute to sinkhole development. ”

What does that all mean?

Southwest Florida Water Management District

What are the warning signs?

1. Slumping or sagging fence posts, trees, etc..
2. Cracks in foundation in unusual areas.
3. Rain water pooling in areas that have never held water before.

For more information, please read through the Southwest Florida Water Management’s helpful guide. 

May Jeff Bush rest in peace, and may the rest of us be safe from the danger below us.

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