A huge crater has appeared in a heavily populated residential area in Dongguan, southern China, following the collapse of an underground tunnel.
One construction worker was killed and a van fell into the chasm during the collapse, which took place on August 12. People living in the buildings opposite the disaster site took video footage of the entire incident. The video has since gone viral.
The sinkhole appeared suddenly on a section of Chang Ping Road at the edge of Dongguan’s Federation Garden residential area. A construction company had been working on an underground tunnel beneath the road’s surface. The project is thought to be an intercity railway intended to link Dongguan with the neighbouring city of Huizhou.
Reports have stated that the road had started to cave in the previous day, but did not collapse entirely until August 12.
The destruction was captured on video, which showed huge sections of the road crumpling and sinking away, leaving the foundations of nearby buildings completely exposed.
Women could be heard screaming in the background as they watched the street surface collapse. One woman cries out, “So scary, my God!”
Gas and water pipes were also destroyed, causing massive gas and water leaks in the area. Several pedestrians who were passing the site when disaster struck narrowly escaped injury and death, but one construction worker who was working underground was killed. A parked van was also sucked into the widening chasm, and has yet to be retrieved.
The area surrounding the hole is heavily populated, and hundreds of local residents had to be evacuated. Large sections of the road have also been cordoned off.
All that remains of the street section is a huge crater, which continues to expand and nearly measures over 3,000 square feet in size. Construction workers are presently attempting to prevent the problem from getting worse by filling the hole with cement.
The disaster has been greeted with universal outrage because this is not the first time that this particular section of road has caved in. Road collapses have plagued the site for three years now , with a total of four cave-ins taking place before the event on August 11. After each one, the craters increased in size and depth, but there were never any injuries until now.