Janesville55.4°

Are we on solid ground?

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Greg Peck
August 22, 2013

A few weeks ago, news reports showed a massive hotel in Florida that was evacuated just before it sank into the ground. Now, a video camera has captured images of a massive sinkhole swallowing tall trees in Louisiana's Assumption Parish.

Apparently gas and oil mining in that region of Louisiana was at the root of that expanding sinkhole, which has caused hundreds of people to leave their homes.

Wisconsin isn't immune to these problems, though ours are on a much smaller scale. Sinkholes have plagued Milwaukee's south side, and one developed as recently as March. 

That reminds me of things we've seen around here. You might recall a few years ago that an apartment building on Janesville's east side had to be abandoned when a nearby embankment gave way.

In the last year or two, I've noticed sinking sections of Ruger Avenue that crews later filled in. I've seen small holes develop around manhole covers and storm sewers elsewhere. A small barricade has diverted drivers around one such small hole next to a manhole cover on Parker Place between The Gazette and St. Mary's Catholic Church. It has been there for weeks if not months. It makes me wonder what's going on down below…

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.



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