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Here Are 12 Sinkholes In South Carolina That Will Leave You Terrified Of Earth

They’re all over the news. Every day somewhere in the United States the news reports the appearance of another sinkhole; some small enough to go unnoticed, others large enough to swallow neighborhoods. South Carolina is not exempt from these occurrences. We may not get them every day, but we get them enough to be concerned. Some of them are man-made, caused by pipes that were laid years before and are now defunct. Some of them are caused because the earth, such as limestone, underneath is crumbling due to nature. Some are just the products of heavy and prolonged rains that cause a multitude of problems. I, personally, am frightened of these things especially after hearing story of a man who was lost in a sinkhole after it opened up under his home in Florida. Here are 12 sinkholes in South Carolina that will leave you terrified of what may come.

(Please note that these pictures are representational of sinkholes and in no way are directly linked to the stories that will follow.)

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1. On July 31, 2013, a tow truck driver got quite a surprise when the asphalt gave way underneath him. One of his tires sunk all the way up to the axle. There was some concern that the truck would tip completely over, but it didn’t and was eventually pulled out by another tow truck. When the SCDOT investigated they found there to be nothing under the hole to hold up the asphalt and the asphalt itself was hot to the point of almost being liquid.  The driver was not hurt in the incident.

2. In Columbia, SC on March 22, 2012 in the vicinity between Blossom and Green streets on Pickens, a very large sinkhole occurred due to a sewer main break. It took quite a few days for it to be repaired. No one was injured.

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3. July 15, 2013 in Dorchester County right on the Orangeburg County line on Wire Road, a huge sinkhole opened measuring 10 feet deep and 7 feet wide effectively shutting down the entire road. Luckily, there were none harmed in the incident. The SCDOT said that the cause was a broken water pipe.

4. Santee State Park has set up a Heritage Trust Site for the sinkholes that have occurred and will occur in the park. Many sinkholes have occurred on the premises. They range from small caves to extremely large sinkholes and underground passages due to the large deposits of limestone. There is one sinkhole that is deeper than a 3-story house that now has trees growing in it and is filling up with debris. A popular thing to do here is to go looking for sinkholes believe it or not!

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5.  On July 31, 2014 and August 1, 2014, the news reported two sinkholes in two different locations in Greenville, SC. Haywood and Airport roads. The one that opened up on Haywood Rd. partially took down a Kangaroo gas station sign. Reports say that these sinkholes developed due to heavy flooding in the area a few days before.

6. In Easley, SC there is a subdivision that is being plagued by sinkholes. This has been happening for the last 12 years or so and some of them are so large that they take away whole yards! The sinkholes have been contributed to the development of the land before the houses were constructed. The workers used corrugated metal to pipe an underground creek in the 1980’s. Since then the metal has rusted away causing this massive sinkholes. The city is trying to do something to help.

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7.  In the Gem Lakes neighborhood of Aiken, SC on April 25, 2015, a loaded dump truck sank into a sinkhole that opened up underneath the back tire. The truck went all the way to the axle. After removing the truck from the area it was found that the sinkhole itself was 5 feet deep.

8. On January 26, 2015, Greenville was plagued once more as a pretty large sinkhole closed down West Park Avenue in the downtown area.

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9. The Socastee swing bridge was closed on May 13, 2014 when a sinkhole was found on the side of the Intercoastal Waterway. It just so happened that a driver noticed it. They closed the bridge until it could be fixed.

10. On July 12, 2014, Hilton Head had three sinkholes due to metal pipes that became degraded due to time. Each hole measured a few feet wide on Governors Drive, Greenwood Drive, and on Yacht Cove Drive.

11. Darlington, SC reported an 8 foot wide sinkhole on June 30, 2015, at the intersection of Orange and Wells. Reports say that it was due to a clay pipe that had collapsed.

12. In November of 2011, Georgetown, SC got a huge shock as a sinkhole brought down Parrish Place and tow more formed on Prince Street and underneath the Back of America. Until then there hadn’t been one in Georgetown for 60 years. Geologists say that the city is built on top of a type of terrain known as Karst. Karst is a type of landscape that features sinkholes, sinking streams, caves, and springs. It is made by the dissolution of limestone, gypsum, and other types of stone including salt.

Sinkholes have become a common occurrence in today’s world however, it is rare that people have died because of them. Even though they say this, I can’t help but to worry that one is going to open up underneath me. If it does happen, I hope the hole is a way to get to Wonderland! What do you think about these occurrences? Let us know in the comment section below.

Gwen Tennille
Gwen is an author, artist, illustrator, graphic designer, mother, wife, and part-time super hero. She loves to tackle her dreams head on and takes life by storm. Coffee is her best friend and a good book cannot be beat! When does she have the time, you ask? Well...do you really need that much sleep?