ENVIRONMENT

Video: Sugar House man notices sinkhole of “unknown depth” in front yard, at a loss for solutions

May 25, 2023, 9:30 PM

After finding a "depression" in his front lawn, a Sugar House local believes his house may be on a ...

After finding a "depression" in his front lawn, a Sugar House local believes his house may be on a massive sinkhole of an "unknown depth." (Jessica Lowell/KSL NewsRadio)

(Jessica Lowell/KSL NewsRadio)

SALT LAKE CITY — When Sugar House local Chad Berghoff’s basement flooded he thought maybe a “depression” in his front lawn was to blame. Little did he know his house could be on top of a large sinkhole of an unknown depth.

Berghoff says earlier this week he was walking through his basement living room when he noticed his socks were saturated with water.

“We took all the furniture out of my house [and] tried to identify where the water was coming from,” he tells KSL NewsRadio.

This led Berghoff and his father to find a “small depression” in his lawn that he hadn’t noticed before.

“We started poking it with a shovel and we noticed the surrounding area started moving with it, which really scared us,” Berghoff says. “We started trying to dig out the area with a shovel … The first or second shovel dig we made at it, we uncovered the hole.”

Video: Jessica Lowell/KSL NewsRadio

Sinkhole of an “unknown depth”

Berghoff says, at this point, they could not see the bottom of the hole.

“It just looked like a hole into Hell, it was terrible,” he tells KSL NewsRadio’s Jessica Lowell.

After opening the hole more, Berghoff says they noticed it was 10 to 15 feet deep. Following this, Berghoff called a plumber for some help.

“He took a measuring probe, which was about 12 feet long, and he placed it in the bottom of the deepest part of the hole,” Berghoff says. “And the probe slid all the way down to the bottom.” 

From this, Berghoff believes the hole to be 20 to 25 feet deep but could be deeper.

Not only does this hole pose a danger to Berghoff and his family, but it also interferes with the business they run out of their home. 

“We run an Airbnb in the top unit of this house,” he says. “So we didn’t want any guest to get hurt.”

No obvious solutions so far

According to Berghoff, no one is certain of the cause of the hole, nor how deep it is.

“The best guess was a natural spring that could be taking material and flowing it in the downwards direction,” he says.

Berghoff says he has contacted multiple agencies including the city who sent an emergency engineer to check out the scene.

“They were nervous because they expected water to be accumulated here so they could test for different mineral build-up to see if it’s groundwater,” he says. “But, they’re really scared because the water has gone away, it’s now dry … They’re thinking there could be a giant vacancy underneath.”

Beyond this, Berghoff says, a plumber recommended filling the hole in. However, he says if the hole were to be filled it could cause the lawn around it to collapse even more.

“The reason I called the news was because nobody had answers,” he says. “We’re just looking for answers at this point.”

Jessica Lowell contributed to this story.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Environment

After starting the new year with poor air quality, Utah may finally be able to take a breath and fi...

Heather Peterson

New black carbon sensor is more portable but just as accurate, study finds

A new study from the University of Utah finds that recently released black carbon new units are just as accurate in detecting black carbon, but they are more portable and affordable.

51 minutes ago

utah lake shown, a bill tackling a failed lake project has advanced...

Adam Small

A bill to undo law regarding controversial, failed Utah Lake project advances to the full House

The law that would be repealed through this bill is the same law that created the Utah Lake Restoration Act.

17 hours ago

People experiencing homelessness walk in the street near a winter overflow shelter at St. Vincent d...

Peter Johnston

Code blue bill would open emergency beds at 18 degrees

The legislature is considering whether to raise the temperature at which emergency beds open up during code blue alerts. 

22 hours ago

Rainy drive...

Adam Small

Rain and snow on its way to the Wasatch Front

Utah will be seeing rain and snow along the Wasatch Front over the next couple of days. Nice weather returns by week's end.

22 hours ago

Endangered Utah butterfly...

Ashley Imlay, KSL.com

Rare Utah butterfly lands on list of species at risk of extinction

A petition to list the Utah butterfly as threatened was submitted to the Fish and Wildlife Service more than 10 years ago.

1 day ago

A lone American flag waves in the morning breeze Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2002, at the Bonneville Salt F...

Allessandra Harris

Water may be the solution to saving the salt flats

With the Bonneville Salt Flats eroding, newly discovered research may have found a way to save them.

3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Video: Sugar House man notices sinkhole of “unknown depth” in front yard, at a loss for solutions