Maryland State Police responded to a call Wednesday evening for an apparent sinkhole in the parking lot of the Aldi supermarket in Eldersburg.
Sgt. Steven Parison said MSP got a call at 6:39 p.m. Wednesday. Upon responding to the Aldi at 1320 Liberty Road, police found a hole approximately 8 inches in diameter and 3 to 5 feet deep in the parking lot.
The Eldersburg area is underlain by non-carbonate rock, Zachary Neal, a hydrogeologist with the Carroll County Department of Land and Resource Management, wrote in an email to the Times. In areas with this kind of rock base, “reported sinkholes tend to be associated with [man-made] causes, mainly buried debris, a collapsed pipe or an old mine.”
Regardless of whether the sinkhole is result of man-made or natural causes, “the single greatest factor that encourages sinkhole expansion is runoff flowing over top of, or into, the initial depression,” according to a 2017 report prepared by the county’s land and resource management department.
Countywide, the department has documented approximately 16 sinkholes this year, Neal wrote. Eight occurred naturally, while there were “about as many, if not more, [human-induced] sinkholes.”
A spokesperson for Aldi released the following statement: “We’re aware of the sinkhole that opened in our Aldi store parking lot at 1320 Liberty Road Suite B in Eldersburg. We’re working with our property manager to address and resolve this incident as quickly as possible. The safety of our employees, customers and the community are our highest priority. Our store is open and operating normally. We regret any inconvenience or concern this situation may have caused.”