Official: Groundhogs may have caused deadly sinkhole

Official: Groundhogs may have caused deadly sinkholeGroundhogs tunneling underneath a road may have caused the 15-foot deep sinkhole that a worker fell in and died, a Pickens County road official says.The tunnels brought water from a nearby creek under the road, removing the dirt from under the asphalt. Eventually, enough soil eroded away to create a hole in the street, said Troy Porter, head of the county’s road department.David Summey, 35, was investigating the sinkhole on Southern Wesleyan University’s campus with two other employees when he accidentally fell into it around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.Summey suffocated minutes later because there was little oxygen available, Pickens Coroner James Mahanes said.Authorities are trying to figure out why there was so little oxygen in the hole. One possible cause is decomposing food and waste from the groundhogs created a buildup of methane gas, Mahanes said.

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