Two sinkholes in Black Hawk led to discovery of a potential gypsum mine

BLACK HAWK, S.D. — Two sinkholes have grown into the discovery of a potential gypsum mine in a Black Hawk subdivision.

One resident, who asked to not be named, says their neighborhood is one large family, but now that friendly neighborhood may be torn apart as homeowners have found they are living on top of a mine.

“All we could think about was right where that big hole is, our kids play there all the time.” said a Carisa Gervinho, a Black Hawk resident.

12 families have been displaced in Black Hawk. An investigation is underway as to how two properties in the hideaway hills subdivision became hosts to two sinkholes Monday night.

Doug Huntrods, Meade County Emergency Manager, said “We know a lot of the homes are sitting over a cavern.”

Meade County Emergency Management says the holes reveal a gypsum mine roughly the size of half a football field.

“Historically back in, I’ve seen documents, in 1920s they referred to a mine, a gypsum mine here but as far as when it was developed and what the developer knew we are not sure.” said Huntrods.

Meade County departments are collectively looking into the history of the subdivision to determine if the mine was ever disclosed to the county in the original proposal in 2002. After moving buildings since then, they have not been able to find those papers. According to the Meade County Equalization and Planning Office there are no answers as to who knew of the mine.

“They didn’t disclose nothing to me, I had no idea until yesterday or day before that there was actually caves down there,” said Marshall Dauton.

Twelve homeowners on East Daisy Drive have been told they can’t stay in their homes. Now, they’re looking for options.

“We’ve reached out to our insurance company like a lot of people, got a hold of my state farm agent and since there is no direct effect to the house there’s nothing they can do for us,” said John Trudo, a Black Hawk Resident.

The office of emergency management is looking into funding to buy out residents’ homes that now, are worth nothing.

A residential meeting will be held Friday night to discuss concerns and next steps.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News