Why wasn’t I sinking about this? Florida is prone to sinkholes as it is. The terrain is shallow, sandy and porous, contains a widspread aquifer system. Abundant rainfall this summer saturated most of these aquifers. As Hurricane Irma is making landfall today, with storm surges expected to reach up to 10 miles inland and additional rainfalls of up to 25 inches, which puts an enormous weight load on the peninsula, conditions are ripe for widespread sinkhole damage. Keep in mind that the recent Hurricane Harvey pushed Houston’s crust down by 2 cm.
Add to the problem, the Hurricane has already produced steady light seismic tremors on tropical islands at its arrival (see previous article about Barbuda). In the past, earthquakes (obviously much more severe as the tremors in Barbuda) have lead to soil liquefaction of saturated sandy grounds. It remains to be seen to what extent the mass transfer of the storm surges may propagate the soil destabilization without an earthquake. At any rate, if you are still in Florid, besides wind and floods, also be wary of sinkholes during and after Irma.
For an example of the coincidence of sinkholes and rainfalls, here is a story from June 2017, when a car was swallowed by a sinkhole following “only” heavy rains in Ocala.