After days of heavy rain last week, some New Zealand residents got a big surprise when a massive six-story sinkhole suddenly appeared. The sinkhole is one of largest ever spotted in the country – so big, in fact, that it exposed earth from the Paleolithic era. The astonishing fissure is 656 feet long, 66 feet deep and 16 feet wide.

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The sinkhole opened up near a dairy farm on the Bay of Plenty in New Zealand. While the farm has had nine “serious” sinkholes, known in New Zealand as “tomos,” the farmers weren’t quite prepared for something of this magnitude. The sinkhole formed along a known fault line in the area after a deluge of rain.

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Brad Scott, a volcanologist, said that this is the largest sinkhole he’s ever seen. While images of the sinkhole might look like the aftermath of an earthquake, rain was the sole culprit. New Zealand experienced the heaviest rain it has had in 50 years, with some areas getting a month’s worth of rain in an hour.

According to farm manager Colin Tremain, they plan to just leave the sinkhole as it is, because it would be a huge task to fill it. “I was watching it in the rain, huge amounts of water going in, it wasn’t even filling up with water, it’s just going straight out the bottom,” he said.

Via The Mirror

Image via Wikimedia