m Celtic Cross Celtic Cross - Average Everyday Sane Psycho Supergoddess

June 17, 2004

Shake, Rattle & Roll...Get Ready, Midwest

"WILDWOOD, Mo. - To folks around Wildwood, it is nothing but freaky: an entire 23-acre lake vanished in a matter of days, as if someone pulled the plug on a bathtub.
Lake Chesterfield went down a sinkhole this week, leaving homeowners in this affluent St. Louis suburb wondering if their property values disappeared along with their lakeside views.
Some residents said they noticed that the lake, after being swelled by torrential rains weeks earlier, began falling last weekend. The Englishes said they noticed the drop-off Monday.
By Wednesday, the manmade lake - normally seven to 10 feet deep in spots - had been reduced to a mucky, stinky mess.

David Taylor, a geologist who inspected the lakebed Wednesday, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the sinkhole was formed when water eroded the limestone deep underground and created pockets in the rock. The sinkhole was 'like a ticking time bomb.'
The lake and surrounding housing development date to the late 1980s. The development now includes more than 670 condominiums and houses, about one-tenth of them bordering the lake."

Now, we must keep in mind, friends and neighbors, that this has taken place very near the New Madrid Fault

An eyewitness account from a man who lives by the lake: "...large bass and carp were flipping so much that they buried themselves in the mud, and finally I could see the tear that sucked in 25 to 30 million gallons of water, and 20 acres, in about 3 days. It looks like a large, circular fault line. "

None of the news accounts I have read have mentioned it yet, but my intuition says that this is directly related to the New Madrid Fault. Scientists have been predicting for decades now that a devastating earthquake will take place centering on this fault in the Mississippi valley.

"Three earthquakes occurred in 1811 and 1812 near New Madrid, MO. They are among the Great earthquakes of known history, affecting the topography more than any other earthquake on the North American continent. Judging from their effects, they were of a magnitude of 8.0 or higher on the Richter Scale. They were felt over the entire United States outside of the Pacific coast. Large areas sank into the earth, new lakes were formed, the course of the Mississippi River was changed, and forests were destroyed over an area of 150,000 acres. Many houses at New Madrid were thrown down. "Houses, gardens, and fields were swallowed up" one source notes. But fatalities and damage were low, because the area was sparsely settled then."

For comparative purposes, the great San Francisco earthquake of 1989 was a 7.1.

Growing up in Iowa near the Mississippi, I remember feeling a small earthquake that occurred around New Madrid, Mo. I was putting on shoes and the shaking caused me to lose my balance, nearly falling out of my chair. My mom felt it, too. I looked up and her hanging plant was swinging. It was only, if I recall correctly, around a 3.0. The next time may not be nearly as mild and may very well be coming quite soon.


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