The earth swallows a river
The river Listara was suddenly lost in a tectonic fault in Northeastern Colombia, the authorities of the town of San Andres stated yesterday.
The earth “swallowed” the river in an agricultural area at a distance of about 800 m. from this town of 9,000 inhabitants in the Santander province town, authorities said in a broadcast over the Colombian radio station RCN.
Specialists from Bogota which is at a distance of about 400 km were called to investigate the reasons of the phenomenon and to find whether the fault constitutes a threat for the town’s population.
Taking into account that Colombia forms part of the so-called «Pacific Ring of Fire», the region with the greatest seismic activity in the world, scientists are called if the phenomenon is due to a sinkhole created by an imperceptible earthquake.
Similar incidents have happened in the recent past during which lakes have disappeared in the same way as if someone pulled off the water stop from a bathtub.
In 2007 an isolated lake of an expanse of 50,000 square meters in Southern Chile disappeared mysteriously without anyone getting wind of it. The lake lay in the Bernardo O’ Higgins park on the Andes and collected water from a melting glacier. The park wardens reported that they only found a 30 m. deep crater at the location where they had left a lake in March.
The only explanation given was that the water was lost underground because of an earthquake which created a rift. However, despite the high seismicity of southern Chile, no tremors had been reported in the lake’s region.
In 2004 a whole lake which had existed for 20 years disappeared from one day to the next in the Saint Louis region in Missouri, U.S.A. At the bottom of the lake of porous limestone, a rift of about 15 m was created, in which all the lake water fell.
The inhabitants of the lake find themselves in a predicament as their vacation homes lost their value not only because they no longer enjoy a lake view, but also because of the foul smell coming out of the place where the lake once was.