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from AP strange news DELTONA, Fla. - A sinkhole opened beneath a road in central Florida on Saturday, swallowing four lanes of pavement and forcing the evacuation of 20 homes.
Volusia County officials had been watching the hole since Monday, when collapsed asphalt was noticed on Howland Boulevard near Deltona High School. Workers were pumping a cement mixture under the damaged road when the hole formed.
"All of the sudden, they started feeling rumblings in the ground," said Robert Rogers, deputy chief of the fire department in Deltona, about 25 miles southwest of Daytona Beach.
The ground opened up, destroying all four lanes. The hole grew to 50 feet deep and at least 150 feet wide.
"It has not stabilized yet, so I'm sure its going to get a lot bigger," Rogers said.
The essential factor of all sinkhole development is the dissolving of
the underlying limestone by slightly acidic water. As rain falls through the
atmosphere, it absorbs carbon dioxide and forms a weak carbonic acid. As
this water moves through the soil zone, it reacts with living and decaying
plant matter and becomes more acidic. The acidic water slowly dissolves
limestone, especially along the fractures and weak layers. This chemical
erosion eventually causes voids or cavities into which overlying sediments
may collapse or subside. The end result of chemical erosion of limestone,
followed by physical collapse or subsidence, is a sinkhole.