01:26 PM 06:26 AM EST DEC 2, 2023 JLM 68°F
Sinkhole Opens Up at Busy Tel Aviv Intersection

Sinkholes made Israeli headlines several times in 2022.

A sinkhole that opened up at a busy intersection in Tel Aviv on Thursday is forcing drivers to take alternate routes.

The sinkhole, at the intersection of Ben Yehuda and Bograshov Streets, forced police to close certain lanes of traffic. No injuries have been reported.

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.

Thanks to the number of sinkhole incidents in 2022, Israelis voted the word “sinkhole” (bolen in Hebrew) as the Hebrew Language Academy’s word of the year.

Declining water levels, digging through soil and heavy currents of water are among the causes of sinkholes.

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.

Image - Kiryat Yam municipality

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