Jerusalem, 19 January, 2023 (TPS) — A cave-in at a construction site in the central Israeli city of Hod HaSharon has prompted authorities to evacuate two adjacent buildings as a safety precaution.
According to the municipality, a sinkhole opened up at the construction site, where excavation work for an underground parking lot was underway. Nobody was injured.
Several nearby roads have been closed off as engineers assess whether shifting soil poses a threat of more sinkholes.
Declining water levels and digging through soil are among the causes of sinkholes.
Sinkholes made Israeli headlines several times in 2022.
One Israeli was killed and another injured when a sinkhole opened up under a swimming pool at a villa in the town of Karmei Yosef during a party in July. Video on social media showed inflatable pool toys suddenly being sucked into a hole as partygoers scrambled in shock.
In September and November, sinkholes opened up on Tel Aviv’s busy Ayalon Highway. Nobody was injured, but they prompted traffic jams and a surge of internet memes. Tel Aviv drivers were again forced to find alternate routes later in November thanks to a sinkhole opening up on Ibn Gvirol St., another key road.
Sinkholes also pose an increasing danger in the area around the Dead Sea. The shoreline has been receding for years as Israeli and Jordanian companies use evaporation pools to harvest and export the Dead Sea’s minerals.