Breaking News
More () »

Ark. experts weigh in on sinkhole possibility

Days after a Florida man was swallowed up by a sinkhole underneath his house, THV 11 talks with Arkansas earth experts to look into Arkansas' land makeup.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - Days after a Floridaman was swallowed up by asinkhole underneath his house, THV 11 spoke withfoundation expertstosee what makes upArkansas land.

The search for Jeff Bush, 37, was called off Saturday in Seffner, Floridaand a heavy machine with a large bucket scoop was moved into position Sunday. The 20-foot-wide opening of the sinkhole was almost covered by the house, and rescuers said there were no signs of life since the hole opened Thursday.

While experts said Florida land is more susceptible to sinkholes, ground can give way in Arkansas as well.

"Up in Northern Arkansas and the limestone trains up there, people should be aware that that's a possibility," said UALR Earth Science Professor, Jeff Connelly.

Connelly said Limestone dissolves and over time can create open pockets underground.

"It could be there for tens, hundreds, thousands of years and no one knows it's there until it finally collapses," explained Connelly.

Shannon Kemp with Olshan Foundation Solutions said he rarely sees sinkholes, but there are other issues Arkansas should know about.

"Actually moisture is what makes foundations move in this area," said Kemp.

Kemp said water causes Arkansas soil to expand and compress, which if not addressed, can cause problems.

"The sides of the house fall down, all the brick falls off," described Kemp.

The main remedy is making sure runoff water goes in the proper direction.

"Water is going away from the house. If you've got a slope look at the back and try to get the water around the house," said Kemp.

Before You Leave, Check This Out