Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems
13 January 2010
Several sinkholes have opened around the Central Florida area of Plant City and two further sinkholes appeared near Lake Wales following the discovery of a larger sinkhole in the community of Frostproof.
Sinkholes can result from the over-abstraction of groundwater. Robyn Felix, spokeswoman for the Southwest Florida Water Management District said “We know that an aquifer level drop can contribute to sinkholes”
Sinkholes form when water dissolves soft limestone and creates an underground cavity. Pressure from groundwater in the cavity supports the layer of earth between the cavity and surface, said Tony Gilboy, geologist with the water management district. When the groundwater is removed, the top of the cavity collapses, creating the sinkhole.
Lowered water levels are causing problems besides sinkholes for residents around the Dover area. About 150 homeowners reported their wells are dry because the aquifer dropped too low, leaving them with no water.