A chinese family got the shock of their lives when a giant sinkhole emerged(submerged?) in their backyard.

We have all heard about Ali Baba and his mysterious directive from 101 Tales of the Arabian Nights, “open sesame”, but whoever would have thought that a hole could open as suddenly as that fabled door in one man’s back yard overnight?
That is exactly what happened to Zhang Fengrong and his family in Leshan, Sichuan province, China, who were forced to evacuate their home after a 70-foot wide sinkhole unexpectedly opened up in the family backyard overnight.

The depth of the giant crater remains unknown, despite several attempts to measure it by releasing first a 130-foot rope and then a 200-foot rope. Neither rope reached the bottom.

“We can hear the sound of water when we stand on the edge of the hole, but when we throw down stones we don’t hear them land or splash,” said Zhang.

Zhang told the press that he heard a sudden roar, like an earthquake, in the middle of the night, which startled him awake. Stepping outside his back door, he witnessed a giant crater opening up and moving rapidly towards his home.

Within the span of 24 hours, the hole spread from about 10-feet wide to its current size.

The family have temporary living quarters in two rooms provided by the village, and neighbors have helped them move their belongings from the home.

Sinkholes aren’t common phenomena, but they have occurred in other places in the world, including Guatemala. Another sinkhole almost 80-meters long cropped up near a school elsewhere in China, and a three story building and a private home fell into the hole.

Sinkholes are usually caused by the removal of underground soil by water. Sometimes the hole forms slowly and in other instances it is sudden, like a volcanic eruption.


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