Remembering the National Corvette Museum sinkhole

Published: Feb. 11, 2019 at 11:08 PM CST
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February 12, 2014, will mark five years since the National Corvette Museum sinkhole swallowed eight classic cars.

In light of the event, The Bob Kirby branch of the Warren County Public Library held a video presentation remembering it on Monday night.

"It's hard to believe it's been five years since the sinkhole happened and even watching some of the old video clips or news stories sometimes I get a little emotional, waking up that morning and not knowing what the future held, like if the building was going to be able to remain standing or if this hole was going to eventually take more cars and more of the building with it," says Katie Ellison, Manager of Marketing and Communications at the National Corvette Museum.

Dr. Leslie North, Associate Professor of Geography at WKU says it wasn't what she expected.

"When we first arrived the interpretation was that it was just a sinkhole, and that didn't have a cave passage that extended beyond the hole that we could physically see," said North.

But the sinkhole would reveal much more than just a hole in the ground.

"Once we were able to get in and explore then we quickly realized there was actually a cave and so unlike a traditional sinkhole that would have opened up, it was actually the roof of a cave that had collapsed in and created the presence of a sinkhole on the surface," said North.

She adds that sinkholes are common in this area.

"In the south-central Kentucky area we are known as the sinkhole plain, and it's known by that name because we live in a karst landscape, in this karst landscape it's known for the presence of caves, sinkholes, sinking streams, aquaphors... those sorts of things."

The landscape and the geology also play into that role. But North says it's something we should be aware of, and not frightened by.

"If you live in south central Kentucky and you live in the sinkhole area yes it seems terrifying to some people that you live in the sinkhole area, but it's no different than living in a place were you may have tornado hazards or earthquake hazards or tsunamis or hurricanes, every place has their hazard and you just kind of learn to adapt to it," said North.