Sinkholes in Pennsylvania affect stream quality, groundwater quality and public health and safety.
For general information on sinkholes, a DEP Fact Sheet is now available. Please click to view DEP's
Sinkhole Fact Sheet (PDF). Also, see DCNR's information on
Sinkholes in Pennsylvania.
Karst - Description of a landscape developed upon limestone or dolomite rock. Karst is characterized by sinkholes, caves and underground drainage of water due to the dissolution (dissolving) of the rock. Other features of a karst landscape may include rock pinnacles, uneven bedrock surface, rolling terrain, swallets (where stream flow is lost into a hole), large springs, and surface depressions that won't hold water.
Sinkhole - A hole or depression in the ground that results from surface material moving into subsurface pathways caused by the weathering process. A sinkhole occurs by either gradual subsidence to form a depression in the landscape or by collapse to form an abrupt break in the soil.
For sinkhole repair plans, please see Technical Guidance document 363-2134-008
Erosion and Sedimentation Control Best Management Practice, pp 327-331.
Typical sinkhole repair diagram