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Some of the sinkholes are affecting structures, like an apartment complex in Orlando. Others have harmlessly opened up in huge fields like the one behind an Apopka middle school.
Experts say it’s actually fortunate that Irma’s heavy rains came later in the rainy season because, by this point, three months of heavy rain have created a situation where those underground voids have been filled by rainwater.
That puts upward pressure on the soil, giving it even more support.
Jay Silver, founder of the sinkhole repair company Helicon, says it could’ve been even worse had we gotten Irma’s soaking rain right after our recent drought. Now?
are not going to see these sinkholes open up as you would in a rapid rain scenario, said Silver.
But that same water table,
holding the ground up for now, will eventually recede, says Albergo, which will create voids that could lead to dramatic collapses like the one recently in Pasco County.
roof gets really thin, and anything can cause it. And when it goes down, bam! That’s what you saw in Land O’ Lakes, said Albergo.
And since it can take several weeks for rainwater to slowly seep its way into Florida’s aquifer,
experts say the effects of the storm could be with us for months to come.