A massive sinkhole opened up, and it swallowed a large passenger bus in Xining China. Six people were killed, 16 injured, and ten others were left missing after the sinkhole took down the bus and pedestrians walking in the area. The public bus was stopped when the massive sinkhole suddenly opened up beneath it. Passengers were boarding the bus the instant the sinkhole opened. It swallowed the front of the vehicle, a lamppost, and people waiting in line to board the bus.
Road Collapses A Second Time
A young man picked up a baby that was at the edge of the sinkhole. He returned, with several other people, to help a woman who was hanging on the edge of the hole. However, when they attempted to pull her up, the road collapsed a second time. This resulted in everyone falling into the hole.
Bus Was Near A Hospital
The bus was driving on the street near where the Great Wall Hospital is located. After the bus fell, it was almost entirely underground as it was stopped at a bus stop to pick up additional passengers. People walking in the area scrambled for safety. The incident brought more than 1,000 emergency workers to the scene to assist with the situation.
Cause Of Sinkhole Is Unknown
It was around 5:30 pm on Monday in the capital of Qinghai province when the incident occurred. Following the collapse, an explosion was triggered inside the hole. This was followed by yellow smoke pouring from the huge hole. The blast sent up a ball of fire above ground. A thick cloud of smoke followed this. Several smaller explosions continued. The sinkhole measured a total of 860 square feet according to the ‘South China Morning Post.’ The cause of the accident was unknown. However, sinkholes are not uncommon in the country.
Causes Of Sinkholes
When sinkholes occur, it is often the result of soft material like limestone, carbonate rock, or salt bed, which erodes below the surface. They can happen naturally or be caused by human-made behaviors due to pumping or construction. Aside from the rapid construction projects in China, sinkholes also are caused by mineral and coal mining.
Other Sinkholes In China
Sinkholes are often blamed on construction works along with the country’s rapid pace of development. In 2016, at least three people fell into a huge sinkhole in central Henan province. This resulted in a section of the road and passersby being swallowed. It was believed this was the result of water pipes under the road breaking up from heavy rains in the area. Three years earlier, five people were killed when a sinkhole opened up at the gates of an industrial estate in Shenzhen. Just a month ago, three people in two vehicles fell into a massive sinkhole that suddenly opened in Guangzhou. This was located near the construction site of a new underground rail line. Eleven days later, a road caved in the coastal city of Xiamen. This was also at an underground construction site. It trapped at least two vehicles, although no one was injured in the incident.