Horror Footage Shows Sinkhole Opening in Swimming Pool, Dragging Man In

A man who was sucked into a sinkhole that spontaneously opened in a swimming pool in Israel has been found dead.

As reported by The Times of Israel, rescue operations took four hours before emergency services recovered the man's body on July 21 from the 43-foot deep hole. Later identified as 32-year-old Klil Kimhi, the exact cause of his death—whether he drowned, was crushed, or died from the fall—is still unknown.

A video posted to social media shows the floor of the swimming pool, located in a private home in Karmei Yosef, central Israel, buckling and collapsing inwards, sucking in most of the pool water within seconds. Two men were swept into a vortex that dragged them into the sinkhole.

One of the men, aged 34, managed to climb out, while Kimhi was later found dead. Six people were in the pool at the time and the rest were unharmed.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, while there are several ways that sinkholes can form, they usually occur when the ground below the land surface dissolves into the groundwater and is washed away, leaving an open cavern covered only by a thin layer of ground.

Sinkholes are frequent in areas where the rocks are made from limestone, carbonate rock, or salt beds. Human action can also cause sinkholes to form, with groundwater pumping and construction practices changing the natural ground structure and the water drainage patterns.

drainage hole
Stock image of the Glory Hole spillway at Monticello Dam in Lake Berryessa, California. Water was sucked into a sinkhole that opened up in the home pool in Israel, dragging two men inside the chasm. iStock / Getty Images Plus

The larger the chasm underneath the land surface gets, the more dramatic the sinkhole: sometimes, entire cars or even houses can fall into the ground when the thin layer of surface eventually gives way. In the U.S., the states that experience the most sinkhole-induced damage include Florida, Texas, Alabama, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania.

In Florida in 2010, over 100 sinkholes formed in Dover during a single freeze event, as the farmers irrigated their plants excessively to protect them from the cold lead to the ground water levels dropping enormously.

In Israel, search teams built a support structure to prevent the pool floor from further collapsing onto them as they looked for the missing man. The search was complicated by the fact that there may have been secondary tunnels connected to the main sinkhole tunnel that could subsequently collapse as well, which would be very dangerous for the rescue teams.

Police at the scene in Israel have said that they were opening an investigation into the death and were going to look into the licensing involved in the construction of the pool. According to The Times of Israel, local police have "interrogated the owner of the home on suspicions of negligent manslaughter." It said the owner had not applied for a permit before building the pool.

Newsweek has asked the police for comment.