More than 400 villagers have been evacuated after huge cracks and cave-ins suddenly formed in central China’s Hubei Province on December 10, 2016.
Cracks up to hundreds of meters long and 20 cm wide appeared in croplands and across most parts of Fengmiao Village, leaving fishponds dried up, buildings collapsed and roads damaged. Fortunately, no casualties have been reported yet.
Imagine the fear: “We woke up after hearing a huge noise, like a bomb going off. I turned on the light and found the house cracking. We took our kid and ran out barely wearing any clothes,” said a villager.
The village was immediately cordoned off and evacuated by local authorities.
The incident occurred at an abandoned gypsum-mining area. Preliminary investigations show that the cracks along the surface were caused by deformations within the mined-out areas.
There were indeed multiple vertical posts in the mined-out area when it was closed. They gradually broke over the years amid conditions such as weathering and erosion.
Further investigation into the incident is currently underway.