Recognizing sinkholes | Living the Country Life

Recognizing sinkholes

Once you find a sinkhole, there's a tendency it is widespread. Bob Libra, a geologist for the State of Iowa, tells us how to recognize them.

Radio interview source: Bob Libra, geologist, State of Iowa






Listen here to the radio story mp3

It can strike suddenly after centuries of hiding, and will devour anything in its path. Sounds like a horror movie plot, but in reality there could be a sinkhole on your land. Some sinkholes have been correlated to land-use practices, especially from groundwater pumping, construction, and development. They can also form when natural water drainage patterns are changed and new water diversion systems are put in. If something looks suspicious on your land, the first thing to do is check out the neighborhood because sinkholes tend to be widespread. Then call your local NRCS office.

U.S. Geological Survey: Learn about sinkholes and see a map of the United States detailing which areas are most vulnerable. This Web site, started by a group of citizens concerned about sinkholes on their property, offers signs to watch for and what to do if you think a sinkhole may be forming on your land.

Homesite buyers beware: Learn how the ideal setting for a home may be setting you up for problems in the long run, including sinkholes.

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