2-Mile-Long Crack Opens in Arizona Desert
A gaping, 2-mile-long crack has opened in the barren earth in Arizona, and it will likely continue to grow, geologists say.
Recent footage from a flyover by an Arizona Geological Survey drone revealed the extent of the huge fissure in Pinal County, between Casa Grande and Tucson, showing the enormous gash splitting the barren land. The crack is so big that it dwarfs people walking along its edges.
The northern part of the fissure, which is older and partially filled in, is shallow, while the southern portion is tens of feet deep in some spots.
Water withdrawal, primarily for agriculture, is the culprit. As groundwater is pulled up, it leaves a void and the land above it subsides, leading to cracks. Arizona is full of these cracks. We see earth fissures forming around the margins of these subsidence areas and along mountain fronts within the subsidence areas.