Officials of the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, KY were awakened before dawn on Feb. 12 by their security company. A large sinkhole had opened under the museum’s Skydome structure. Investigation by the Bowling Green Fire Department revealed a hole in the floor of the display area that is 40 feet in diameter and over 25 feet deep. Eight cars had fallen into the hole. Six were museum owned and two were on loan from GM. There were no injuries.
The museum was closed for the day while structural engineers inspected all of the buildings on site. The Skydome is a separate structure from the main museum building. The cars that fell were:
- 1993 ZR-1 Spyder on loan from General Motors
- 2009 ZR1 “Blue Devil” on loan from General Motors
- 1962 Black Corvette
- 1984 PPG Pace Car
- 1992 White 1 Millionth Corvette
- 1993 Ruby Red 40th Anniversary Corvette
- 2001 Mallett Hammer Z06 Corvette
- 2009 White 1.5 Millionth Corvette
All of the remaining cars in the building were removed safely. Video of the collapse as well as other video of the sinkhole can be found on the National Corvette Museum’s YouTube site.
A sinkhole is the result of water dissolving bedrock, resulting in a depression in the ground or a pocket within the bedrock covered with a cap of rock and soil which then collapses. That is what occurred in Kentucky today. While a collapse can be quite sudden, the pocket in the rock below may have been forming for years or decades.
In Nov. 2013 a large sinkhole swallowed a house in Dunedin, FL, CNN reported. The homeowner had begun steps to try to stabilize the situation but it was too late. The hole badly damaged a nearby home. The sinkhole was estimated to be 70 to 75 feet wide, 50 feet deep and still growing at the time of CNN’s report on Nov. 14.
On Feb. 28, 2013, a sinkhole opened during the night beneath the bedroom of a home in in suburban Tampa, FL, CNN reported on Mar. 5. A man sleeping in that bedroom was presumed killed in the collapse. The sinkhole was estimated to be 20 to 30 feet across and about 30 feet deep.