Santa Clara officials reported a 25-feet sinkhole close to Levi’s Stadium spread and devoured two cars during a late night on Wednesday. Santa Clara spokesperson Lon Peterson commented on the cause of the incident in the city.
“A 12-inched recycled water pipe leaked and caused flooding in a commuter park near Stars & Stripes Drive, triggering the incident,” stated Peterson. “City Water & Sewer Utilities’ staff worked quickly to shut off the water supply,” he added.
However, Peterson also addressed in his statement that despite their efforts, “street flooding still occurred.” The utility staff quickly arrived at the scene doing cleanups and restorations on Thursday.
Video footage of a crane taking off the two cars from the muddy hole got captured by a KTVU news chopper who was there during the cleanup.
Another similar incident concerning sinkholes also occurred somewhere in Los Angeles. On November 10 of this year, a parked van got devoured by a sinkhole in a South Los Angeles neighborhood on the day’s early morning hours. The sinkhole started in the South Buckingham Road’s 3600th block. The basin tilted a van in the process of its formation. Luckily no one was inside the vehicle during the time of the incident. The van belongs to a family that lives on the same street.
The cause of the sinkhole’s formation is a broken eight-inch cast iron main, as declared by the L.A. Department of Water and Power.
The identification of the van got revealed as a 1993 Dodge Explorer type, and Amber Anderson is the vehicle’s owner. Based on her interview with CBSLA, Anderson slept through the water main break and got woken up by her dog about it.
“I came out of my front door and, wow,” expressed Anderson. “My van behind me is inside of a hole,” she added.
Additionally, Anderson noted that this is the second time the block experienced a sinkhole creation.
“Three houses down, we had like a smaller sinkhole,” Anderson said, adding, “Where a water line broke again, and it made a hole in the ground.”
During the incident, a neighbor’s CCTV camera captured footage of the sinkhole forming and tilting the van downwards in the process.
Officials did not disclose additional information regarding the cause of the water main break, including the severity of damages that the van experienced from the situation.
To address such issues, LADWP crews restored the sinkhole and the main break, closing Buckingham Road in the process to prevent any disturbances and additional damages.
The United States Geological Survey shares their thoughts and knowledge surrounding the incident and what caused it to transpire.
“As the rock dissolves, spaces and caverns develop underground,” USGS explained. “Sinkholes are dramatic because the land usually stays intact for a while until the underground spaces just get too big,” they added.
Furthermore, USGS also mentioned that sinkholes could most likely happen when the rock below the Earth’s surface is a carbonate rock, salt beds, limestone, or rocks that can naturally undergo liquefaction by groundwater surrounding them.
States such as Pennsylvania, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee, Florida, Missouri, and Texas suffer the most damages inflicted by sinkholes.
Sinkholes are proven hazardous incidents, especially when they form in suburban areas where many people live and thrive. These basins could vary in size and can devour things from cars to houses. Sinkholes left unattended could potentially destroy buildings and highways, inflicting possible dangers to people nearby. During a sinkhole formation, surface waters may leak into the aquifer,
contaminating drinking water in the process.
As of late, Florida is one of the states that suffer the most out of sinkhole formations. Frequent basin accidents in the area all result from the limestone erosion occurring under the city’s ground surface.