I will confess that I only think about sinkholes when I see one appear and that's not frequently. There have been some that have been spotted in Missouri recently which led me on an investigation where I learned that the state is a dangerous sinkhole hotspot.

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This topic came up after I saw Ozarks First report that a sinkhole suddenly appeared on Highway 60 near Springfield, Missouri a few weeks ago. That's not a rare occurrence by the way. The Missouri Department of Natural Resources estimates the state has 16,000 sinkholes and that's just the ones they've mapped.

The USGS has a Karst map showing dangerous sinkhole regions (the areas in red) and you can see that Missouri is canvased with them especially the part of the state bordering the Mississippi River.

USGS
USGS
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Some of these Missouri sinkholes are massive with the Department of Natural Resources saying "the largest known sinkhole in Missouri encompasses approximately 700 acres in western Boone County". Yikes.

When you consider the vast areas of limestone and caves underneath Missouri, it really should come as no shock that there's a good chance land can just suddenly open up and sometimes without warning like the sinkhole on Highway 60 back in August of this year.

The state of Missouri does have an app that makes it easy to check out known sinkholes if you're concerned that the ground under your feet could suddenly disappear when you least expect it.

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