The Gates of Hell Just Opened In Guatemala

2010 June 1

“This can’t be real” was my first thought. Then I checked the source: The Guatemalan government. This sinkhole appeared last sunday in a street intersection of Ciudad de Guatemala. Just looking at the photo gives me vertigo.

Click on the images to see the high resolution version.

A sinkhole is a natural depression caused by the removal of underground soil by water. Usually, it happens when the substrate is formed by limestone, carbonate rock, salt beds or any other rock that is easily eroded by water streams. The process could be slow, but sometimes the land just cracks open without notice. In this case, it happened suddenly, swallowing an entire house. The cause: Massive underground water torrents created by tropical storm Agatha.

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