It hasn’t been a good year for the land in Russia. Earlier this year a gaping 262-foot wide hole opened up in Siberia and now a gigantic sinkhole has popped up in the Perm region. Unlike the last hole, that still baffles scientists, this hole is the result of a collapsing potash mine which left a chasm right in the middle of an abandoned mining town. At least the town is uninhabited – but a connected mine sits underneath a populated town just a few miles away, and experts fear that it may also collapse in the near future.
Mining company Uralkali, which manufactures fertilizer using the mined potash, recently announced that their Solikamsk-2 mine was evacuated after being flooded with salty water. Shortly after, the sinkhole opened up in the ground, which makes you wonder just how unstable the ground is in that area. What’s particularly troubling is that very little separates this mine from one nearby and the unstable ground could be ripe for another collapse – this time with even worse consequences.
Before Americans go patting themselves on the back for avoiding such a calamity, keep in mind that there’s a 215,00 square foot sinkhole that’s been swallowing trees in Louisiana for the past few years and it shows no signs of stopping.
Images via Uralkali