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Sian
Wednesday 30 Jan 2013

Sinkhole swallows buildings in Guangzhou


A large sinkhole has appeared next to the construction site of an underground rail station in Guangzhou, Southern China. The hole appeared in the ground next to the boundary of the construction site on the afternoon of Monday 28 January and has since swallowed three buildings which were unoccupied at the time. There have been no reported casualties.

The project currently under construction nearby is a station on Line 6 of the Guangzhou Metro, owned by the City of Guangzhou and operated by Guangzhou Metro Corporation. A local geologist, Zhan Long, told The Global Times: “The [swallowed] buildings were over 100 years old and any underground construction can lead to a drop in the water table, which can cause subsidence.”

China is no stranger to sinkholes with many much larger than the 9m-wide hole that appeared in Guangzhou this week. The Xiaozhai Tiankeng is the largest sinkhole in the world at 662m deep and is located in Chongqing Municipality, while the Dashiwei Tiankeng in Guangxi is 613m deep and harvests a forest with rare species of foliage at its base.

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