How Are Sinkholes Formed?

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Deep sinkhole on a street city and orange traffic cone Charlotte, NC

You may have heard of sinkholes only in the news or in movies, but sinkholes are a lot more common than you think. To help you get a clearer picture of what sinkholes are, here’s a quick overview of how they are formed and how Federal EC’s expertise in pipe rehabilitation in Charlotte, NC can be beneficial.

1. Groundwater Pressure

As rainfall infiltrates the soil, it reacts with the soil and water and then runs into groundwater. Groundwater is a layer of water that travels underground through cracks, pores, and crevices. Underground streams cause the dissolution of certain particles in the soil, and this can lead to a sinkhole. This is why we take great care to perform efficient storm drain rehabilitation so groundwater issues don’t fester.

2. Human Activity

When humans change or alter the landscape, this can affect the soil and water balance underground. Underground utility construction can loosen the soil, triggering the formation of a sinkhole. Soil and groundwater are affected by human influence.

3. Leach Field Damage

If a leach field is compromised, toxic contaminants from waste are released into the soil and groundwater, which can cause siltation or collapse of soils in the vicinity. Siltation is the deposition of fine particles on top of each other, which can make the ground unstable. We recommend trenchless pipe lining, since it reduces the likelihood of leach field damage.

4. Agricultural Structures

If an area has a stream for agricultural structure practices, it is possible to have a sinkhole. The land upstream of the structure can be affected if the stream gets blocked or completely collapses.

5. Soil Structure

The geological structure of the soil can also cause sinkhole formation. For instance, unstable soil or loosely packed ground will be more likely to give way, so that’s also one thing we consider when determining whether a CIPP pipe lining would work.

Sinkholes are not to be taken lightly, so when you need sinkhole repair and rehabilitation, contact Federal EC right away.


When you need top-quality pipe inspection and repair services in the greater Atlanta area and Charlotte, North Carolina, don’t think twice about getting in touch with us here at Federal EC. Our pipe specialists would be more than happy to assist you with all of your project requirements. Contact our team today by calling us or filling out the online form. Federal EC serves Atlanta, GA, and Charlotte, NC. We look forward to working with you.

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