When you live in Sinkhole Alley, you know that sinkholes pose a major risk for people, homes, and businesses. Tampa Bay residents are intimately familiar with the dangers of sinkholes, but it’s often difficult to understand why sinkholes occur so often in Pasco, Hernando, and Hillsborough counties, as well as other areas of the Sunshine State.
What Is a Sinkhole?
The U.S. Geological Survey’s Water Science School defines a sinkhole as land made of subterranean rock (such as limestone) that dissolves due to groundwater circulation. Some sinkholes take years to form, while others collapse in a matter of seconds.
Florida is certainly a common site for sinkholes. Some sinkholes are small and shallow, so they might only cause foundation issues or other smaller repairs. Other sinkholes can prove catastrophic. Fortunately, researchers are developing technology to identify areas of possible sinkhole activity to help prevent sinkhole damage.
Why Does Sinkhole Alley Exist?
Since sinkholes can theoretically develop anywhere, it’s confusing for many Floridians that sinkholes happen so often in certain areas, such as Sinkhole Alley. Inconsistent weather in the Tampa Bay area could represent a possible cause. A long draught followed by intense rain can accelerate sinkhole development and cause sudden collapse of the earth.
Florida sits between two bodies of water and experiences heavy moisture. In Sinkhole Alley, the carbonate bedrock provides the perfect ingredients for a sinkhole to form, and the acidic rainwater can easily penetrate to the bedrock and eat away at its foundation.
How Can Floridians Protect Themselves?
It’s impossible to prevent sinkholes entirely, but Sinkhole Alley residents can protect themselves and make sinkholes less likely. A sinkhole remediation specialist provides increased stability for your home or business, as well as enhanced peace of mind. Such a service stabilizes the soil underneath a structure and grouts the gaps in the limestone bedrock so they don’t widen further.
Loose soil underneath a home or business can create a dangerous situation. Sinkhole experts can impact the soil so that it sits more densely under a building, making it less likely to give away. Both chemical and compaction grouting are proven to provide more stability for Tampa Bay structures, especially if you’ve noticed sinkhole activity.
The sun, sand, and water associated with Florida make the state a beautiful place to live. Protecting your home from sinkholes and fixing damage after it occurs will allow you to enjoy Florida’s benefits without worry.