Thursday, 18 December 2014

Sinkhole appears in garden of home in Berkshire, England.

A large sinkhole has appeared in the garden of a house in the village of Upper Basildon near Reading in Berkshire, England. The hole measures about 10 m across and 5 m deep, and first appeared on 5 December 2014, since when it has been growing steadily. This is the second such hole to affect the homeowners this year, a smaller hole having appeared on their drive in February, temporarily trapping their car.

 The December 2014 Upper Basildon Sinkhole. BBC.

Sinkholes are generally caused by water eroding soft limestone or unconsolidated deposits from beneath, causing a hole that works its way upwards and eventually opening spectacularly at the surface. Where there are unconsolidated deposits at the surface they can infill from the sides, apparently swallowing objects at the surface, including people, without trace. Potash, a potassium salt, is readily soluble and can be dissolved quickly if water gains access to deposits, leading to the rapid formation of sinkholes.

On this occasion Clive Edmonds of engineers Peter Brett Associates who are investigating the incident suspects that the incidents may be linked to Victorian brick factory that used to occupy the site, tunnels associated with which run about 16 m bellow the ground in the area. Both holes opened up after periods of extended high rainfall, which may have led to the weakening of supports in the tunnels and sediments above the tunnels losing cohesion and slumping into the void spaces.

See also...

A sinkhole was discovered on Thursday 21 August 2014 at Cowshill in the Weardale District of County Durham, northeast England. At the time the hole was about 5 meters across, but it has been growing ever since, and by Monday 25 August had reached about 35 meters wide, raising fears it may threaten the home of the landowners on whose property it...

A seven-year-old girl has escaped with cuts and bruises after falling into an 8 m sinkhole near her home in Shuttlewood, Derbyshire. Daisy-Mae Jones was...
Three homes were evacuated after a 7.5 m wide sinkhole oppened up in Rippon, North Yorkshire, on...
 
 
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