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Arkansas To Evaluate Riverbed After Sinkhole, Kayaker Death

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas has hired a consultant to evaluate a stretch of the Spring River after a kayaker drowned this month when he was dragged into a rare sinkhole that created a whirlpool.

Commissioner of State Lands John Thurston says experts on Monday (June 25) will begin evaluating the riverbed. The sinkhole area remains closed to the public.

Officials say 64-year-old Donald Wright of Searcy died in the June 9 accident near Saddler Falls.

A statement from Thurston’s office says the matter is of utmost importance especially with the anticipated increase of traffic with the upcoming July Fourth holiday.

Officials say sinkholes are common in the northern half of Arkansas, where subterranean limestone easily erodes. It’s unusual to have a sinkhole open a whirlpool in the middle of a stream.

(Google Maps)