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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 3:05 PM by admin

PLANT CITY, Fla.—Volcanoes and earthquakes get all the attention. But what about sinkholes?

Florida is full of sinkholes. Many of its lakes started out as sinkholes. In the sinkhole epicenter, north and east of Tampa, limestone lies under the surface like a layer of stale bread. When a bubble in the bread caves in, the land sinks. A sinkhole ensues.

Evan Chreitzberg’s house in Plant City sank three feet in January; his insurers declared the condemned property a total loss.
Some Florida sinkholes are big, like the one that ate a Winter Park car dealership in 1981. Others lurk underground, causing cracks in driveways. Lately, a large number of sinkholes have been opening beneath houses in a state already beset by underwater mortgages.

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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 3:02 PM by admin

State Rep. Rick Kriseman is a reluctant expert on property insurance.

A fire torched his home. His previous Florida-based insurer faltered. His rates jumped 90 percent in the last year.

And now the St. Petersburg Democrat is sounding an alarm about legislative efforts to revamp the system to benefit property insurers at the expense of customers.

“We are making major decisions that have serious impacts on our citizens without full vetting, and that’s when bad policy comes out,” Kriseman said.

The convoluted issue is often one the last to coalesce in the Legislature, but this year appears especially murky with Gov. Charlie Crist’s possible veto looming over the negotiations.

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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:56 PM by admin

Plant City, Florida — “We are coming home April 19,” reads the sign outside Trapnell Elementary School, which has been shut down for three months by sinkhole concerns under the campus.

Monday morning, kids will climb out of cars and empty off buses to return to class at Trapnell for the first time since mid-January.

In January, the beginnings of a sinkhole were discovered underground, near the administrative building and media center.

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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:50 PM by admin

TUCKER, Ga. — DeKalb police are investigating a dump truck with a “top soil” sign that rolled over into a family’s back yard Friday.

It happened in the 5900 block of King Way Walk in Lithonia. News Chopper 2 flew over the scene and captured video of the truck on its side, and scattered wood from a destroyed the fence.

The driver, Andy Bickers, spoke with Channel 2’s Diana Davis. He told her a family had ordered a load of dirt to fill a sinkhole in their backyard.

Bickers said he felt all 55,000 pounds of truck and dirt shift and he knew the truck would tip over. Bickers told Davis he’s not hurt, just a little embarrassed.

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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:46 PM by admin

Should travelers in California be concerned with shifting roadway after a large sinkhole swallowed a car in Richmond, CA yesterday? Sinkholes do appear all over the United States but there are 6 states more likely to have sink holes appear, and California is not among them.

Florida, with its frequent rains and marshy terrain, is usually identified with sinkholes, but they’re also prominent in Alabama, Kentucky, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Texas according to the U.S. Geological Service (USGS).

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Sinkhole in Richmond

Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:29 PM by admin

City Administrator Brian Bingle said workers have yet to expose the eye of the sinkhole, even after digging down about 28 feet.

The sinkhole occurred in the yard of Nathan and Ashley Virts’ home on Fairway Street, initially measuring about 6 feet wide and 15 to 20 feet deep.

Now a geoengineering firm has been hired to conduct a resistivity test, which performs much like a sonar — sending sound waves down into the sinkhole to map the subsurface.

Read more about this Sinkhole Damage .

Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:27 PM by admin

The city will have to spend more than $1 million to repair sinkholes that damaged roads and threatened a water tank.

Bids for repairs to sinkhole-damaged Azalea Bloom Drive, Creek Way Court, Concord Way, Kipling Court and Silvermoon Drive ranged from a total of slightly more than $763,000 to $837,000. Bids for repairs to the Mobley and Risk street intersection ranged from $253,000 to $272.000.

The bidders for the roadwork gave the city several options, including separate bids on each project.

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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:23 PM by admin

RICHMOND — Public works crews and utility workers this morning are at the scene of a massive sinkhole that opened up Thursday evening, but there is no estimate for when the ground will stabilized enough for residents to drive past.

The sinkhole swallowed a parked car and several yards of sidewalk, and according to the latest estimate, measured 60 feet long by 40 feet wide and 20 feet deep. Crews are examining whether the ground collapse affected any underground pipes, but so far don’t foresee any utility interruptions.

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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:18 PM by admin

STONE MOUNTAIN, Ga. — Mazhar Hoque said he is frustrated that the sinkhole swallowing his backyard hasn’t been fixed. This is the second time he’s dealt with the hole. Six years ago, he called the Gwinnett County officials to complain about the problem.

“They came by, saw the problem and said it’s being caused by the storm drain,” said Hoque.

After that visit, county workers came and filled in the hole, but Hoque said the ground started sinking again last summer. This time, the county wouldn’t help.

“They told me that they did it one time by mistake, and this time they’re not going to do it,” said Hoque.

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Posted on April 21st, 2010 at 2:12 PM by admin

A father-of-two has narrowly avoided being sucked into a massive sinkhole which formed a 25ft deep crater in his backyard just seconds after he walked across it.
Electrician Ben Luck lived up to his name after the crater, measuring 20ft wide, swallowed up most of his patio just as he went inside his house.

Mr Luck, 57, and his wife Jean, 55, initially thought a car had crashed into their three-bedroom home

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