Underground Mine Subsidence Leads to Huge Sinkhole in Alton

The center of a soccer field at Gordon Moore Park in Alton, Illinois, an area renowned for its extensive subsurface limestone mining operations, has been engulfed by a massive sinkhole.

Sinkhole in Alton

The center of a soccer field at Gordon Moore Park in Alton, Illinois, an area renowned for its extensive subsurface limestone mining operations, has been engulfed by a massive sinkhole. This fissure, which emerged on Wednesday, June 26, 2024, is approximately 100 feet in width and 50 feet in depth. Fortunately, no injuries were reported at the time, as the field was unoccupied.

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Sinkhole is ascribed to surface subsidence

The sinkhole is ascribed to “surface subsidence” from an underground limestone mine that is operated by New Frontier Materials. The mine, which is located approximately 170 feet below earth, extends beneath the city park. The impacted area has been secured and will remain off-limits while experts examine the site and undertake necessary repairs, according to Matt Barkett, a spokesperson for the company. As is customary, the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration has been informed of the incident.

Alton Mayor David Goins underscored the fortunate absence of injuries, acknowledging the substantial disruption that the sinkhole had created. Children frequently played in the chasm that was formed by the disintegration of a large light pole. Authorities are conducting an assessment of the damage and an investigation into the incident, which has resulted in the permanent closure of the park and its surrounding roads.

The scene was characterized as surreal by Michael Haynes, the director of Alton’s Parks and Recreation Department, who likened it to a film. It is anticipated that engineers and geologists will be involved in the assessment of the ground’s stability and the adjacent areas in order to plan remediation efforts.

The re-evaluation of safety measures and the long-term stability of such sites has been prompted by the potential hazards associated with building infrastructure over active mining operations, as a result of this incident.

One Comment

  1. Tim Harlan says:

    Can you at least use the correct photo. Who know where that sinkhole is at but it certainly is not Alton.

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