The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) in Butuan City has issued a road closure due to a hole discovered yesterday morning.
The road along Purok 8, Maharlika Highway, Barangay de Oro has been temporarily blocked due to a large hole discovered yesterday.
Based on local reports, the hole was discovered around 8 a.m. yesterday by a motorist who passed by the area and nearly had an accident. It has been then reported to the barangay, the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, and the DPWH. (Read: Scientists Discover New Swine Flu Virus That May Cause A Pandemic)
The large hole was said to have randomly appeared and is yet to be determined as a sinkhole— a hole in the ground that forms when water dissolves the surface rock.
How is a sinkhole formed?
The cause of a sinkhole is fairly straightforward. It can range from a slight depression in the ground to an enormous hole reaching down half a kilometer. It occurs naturally, especially where there is abundant rainfall, and the rock beneath the surface soil is limestone.
Man-made sinkholes are usually made by accidents when people create roads, aquifers, or other types of construction. Altering land in these ways can weaken the underlying rock and make it more susceptible to sinkholes. (Read: Scientists Discover New Swine Flu Virus That May Cause A Pandemic)
Much like what happened in Butuan, sinkholes can open up in the middle of busy streets or in neighborhoods, especially during heavy rainfall.
Sinkholes in the Philippines
In the Philippines, a sea sinkhole has been discovered in Masbate after a 6.6. magnitude earthquake in August last year. It was discovered in Brgy. Kasabangan, Pio V. Corpus, and a liquefaction in another barangay.
Another sinkhole was discovered in the middle of a river in barangay of Taytay, Badian town in 2017. It was reported by a concerned citizen and was said to be deeper than 20 meters. (Read: 3 Easy Steps to Restore Flooded Furniture and Appliances)
In Bohol, almost 100 sinkholes have been discovered in nine towns and one city in Bohol after the 7.2- magnitude earthquake that shook the province in 2013.