Sinkholes- Sinkholes are depressions or holes in the land surface that occur throughout west-central Florida. They can be shallow or deep, small or large, but all are a result of the dissolving of the underlying limestone.
​Sinkholes have been used for centuries as disposal sites for various forms of waste. A consequence of this is the pollution of groundwater resources, with serious health implications in such areas.The overburden sediments that cover buried cavities in the aquifer systems are delicately balanced by groundwater fluid pressure.

The water below ground is actually helping to keep the surface soil in place. Groundwater pumping for urban water supply and for irrigation can produce new sinkholes in sinkhole-prone areas. If pumping results in a lowering of groundwater levels, then underground structural failure, and thus, sinkholes, can occur.Sinkholes can range in size from a few feet or meters to over 300 feet deep. They've been known to "swallow" cars, homes, businesses, and other structures. Sinkholes are common in Florida where they're often caused by the loss of groundwater from pumping.
Sinkholes can be human-induced. New sinkholes have been correlated to land-use practices, especially from ground-water pumping, construction, and development practices. Sinkholes can also form when water-drainage patterns are changed and new water-diversion systems are developed. Some sinkholes form when the land surface is changed, such as when industrial and runoff-storage ponds are created. The substantial weight of the new material can trigger an underground collapse of supporting material, thus causing a sinkhole.Many of the lakes in Florida are relic sinkholes. Sinkholes can be classified as geologic hazards sometimes causing extensive damage to structures and roads resulting in costly repairs. Sinkholes can also threaten water supplies by draining unfiltered water from streams, lakes and wetlands directly into the water supply.


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