Incredible Photos From Inside Of The Giant Sinkhole In South Dakota Go Viral

Several homes in the Rapid City area were evacuated after a sinkhole collapsed and opened into an abandoned gypsum mine. Twelve Blackhawk families were displaced last week when the 40-foot-by-50-foot sinkhole opened last Monday, breaking water and sewer lines in the neighborhood.

The authorities are already trying to figure out how this could’ve happened but in the meantime, explorers of a local caving group called Paha Sapa Grotto decided to take a look inside. More info: pahasapagrotto.org | Facebook

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto The Paha Sapa Grotto is a subchapter of the National Speleological Society and is a world leader in caving science, exploration, and conservation. “When we heard about the sinkhole, we knew it was on a geological unit that could potentially have caves in it,” Nick Anderson, a member of Paha Sapa Grotto, told Bored Panda. “We also knew that county emergency management wouldn’t have much experience in this area so we offered to help to determine the scope of the problem.” Albert Reitz experienced the sink as he was mowing his lawn, according to local news. “I felt suction behind me and a little bit of movement under my feet. I looked behind me and I was only a foot away from” a sinkhole, he told local news on Friday as movers were packing his home in Blackhawk.

“I didn’t even hear it go down, it just went down,” said the 56-year-old. He said he was “scared as hell.”

He then ran to a neighbor’s house. The neighbor in question, John Trudo, already knew something was amiss when his faucet stopped working, and his wife Erika called 9-1-1. Six families were evacuated from the area due to the sinkhole and another one that was discovered across the street.

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto That’s when the cavers arrived to explore the sinkhole. On Wednesday and Thursday, the cavers, people who explore caves, discovered that the giant sinkhole actually opened into an abandoned gypsum mine that’s at least 600 feet long and filled with holes from drilling and mining equipment. “I really never imagined that when we went back down there it would be that big,” said Adam Weaver, a member of Paha Sapa Grotto, a local caving group. Doug Huntrods, emergency manager for Meade County, said in a press conference that the gypsum mine was owned by the Dakota Plaster Company. The Rapid City Journal cites that their paper covered the opening of the Dakota Plaster Plant in Blackhawk in 1910, archives show. And mindat.org, a nonprofit mining information organization, triangulates the old mine on East Daisy Drive to the exact location of the sinkhole. Records do not immediately indicate when the mine closed. Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Christopher Pelczarski, another member of the Paha Sapa Grotto caving group, describes a unique find in the abandoned mine: a car. “There was one place where there is actually literally a car coming out of a hole from the surface, an old car. It’s like a 1951 Ford,” Pelczarski said. “Yeah, it’s half sticking out of the ceiling, basically.” The cavers also found abandoned mining equipment. “There are places you can see old rail-car tracks from the mining operation,” Pelczarski said. “There’s wood that’s just to the point where it looks like a piece of wood, but then you step on it and it just mushes like paper pulp.” The discovery of the mine led to the evacuation of another six families, said Doug Huntrods, emergency manager for Meade County. That put the total displaced at 12 families. “Between 30 and 35 people” have now been evacuated, Huntrods said Friday, speaking from the sidelines of a roped-off sinkhole that straddles Trudo’s and Retiz’s properties.
Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Reitz and Trudo said their home insurance companies will not cover expenses because their policies didn’t include underground risks by sinkholes, according to the Associated Press.

Meade County is seeking FEMA funds to assist those who are now homeless. The families who were evacuated have also set up a GoFund Me page. Trudo, who lost his home to the sinkhole, told the Rapid City Journal that he wants to know if developers or a government agency knew the community was being built on top of an old mine. “Did they know they should not have built on this and somebody turned a blind eye so somebody could make a dollar?”

Meade County’s investigation is currently underway.

“Upon entering, we immediately realized that it was an abandoned gypsum mine and not a cave”

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

“The room we entered was 15 feet tall and 60 feet wide. We got a quick look around and exited”

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto
Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

“We determined that the mine was over 2K feet across and over 150 feet wide. It went directly under at least 12 homes”

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

However, even the Paha Sapa Grotto couldn’t safely explore all of the corners of the sinkhole

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

“The full extent of the mine is still unknown as passages are either collapsed in, flooded, or too dangerous to enter”

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

Currently, the county is trying to get a grant to help cover the cost of the home value as these homes are now worthless

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

Residents of the Hideaway Hills subdivision are suing South Dakota, Meade County, and developers of the subdivision for more than $75,000,00

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

The lawsuit on behalf of 119 homeowners also includes counts against title companies involved in sales of the homes, attorneys for previous owners, and real estate agents who sold the homes

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

The residents are seeking more than $35,000,000 in compensatory damages, $40,000,000 in exemplary damages, and “such other relief as the court deems equitable”

Image credits: Dan Austin/Paha Sapa Grotto

Here’s what people said about the whole ordeal:

Photographer “Time Travels” by Photoshopping Herself into Old Celebrity Photos

Have you ever imagined if you could go back in time and take a picture with famous people? If yes, you will probably enjoy a similar series in 2013, called “Time Travel” created by an artist, Flora. She is a young fine art photographer from Hungary. She uses exquisite photo manipulation in order to create surreal images that are thematically focused on identity, relationships, and dreams. However, today we will mainly focus on how she discovers the possibilities of the well known “selfie” phenomenon with famous people. Let’s admit that it would be pretty difficult to explain the concept of a selfie to a person from the 20th century. But this fact makes these series even more interesting!

“After the first official picture of a black hole was released last week, I decided to look into the Theory of relativity and I’ve been wondering how cool it was, if I could travel faster than the speed of light, ergo I could travel back in time. While I’ve been making a “selfie” with Albert Einstein (photoshopping myself into a picture of him) I decided to celebrate this amazing discovery with a series of pictures, where I travel back in time. ” writes Flora in her website.

Check out the gallery below. Also, tell us in the comment section below; If you could go back in time who would you like to take a selfie with?

More infofloraborsi.com | Instagram | Facebook | floraborsi.tumblr.com | twitter.com | behance.net

#1 Marilyn Monroe

Flora Borsi

#2 Mahatma Gandhi

Flora Borsi

#3 John Lennon

Flora Borsi

#4 Salvador Dali

Flora Borsi

#5 Albert Einstein

Flora Borsi

#6 Sigmund Freud

Flora Borsi

#7 Audrey Hepburn

Flora Borsi

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