Heavy monsoon rain opens a large sinkhole in a busy road in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

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The onset of monsoon rains in Cambodia has opened a large sinkhole in a busy road close to the iconic Olympic Stadium in country's capital, Phnom Penh. 

The city sits at the junction of the Mekong and Tonlé Sap rivers and is thought to be at high risk of sinkholes due to its position astride numerous lakes, which the government has filled in over the years to expand the land on which it can build, VOA Cambodia reports.

Hout Hang, who saw the road collapse during a rainstorm on Wednesday, June 8, 2016, said he had watched in amazement as the tarmac gave way. “It just suddenly happened, and three cars fell into the sinkhole,” he said. “Luckily the cars were just parked there, otherwise, if people were driving, it would be dangerous and could have killed people. I think the construction is too close to the road and that made it collapse,” he added, referring to a nearby construction site.

Large sinkhole opens on a busy road near Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh, Cambodia – June 8, 2016. Credit: SBN

Se Veoun, a local resident, said the community was now scared that the same could happen on their property. “Before this huge construction project started, nothing like this happened. If it rains again, sinkholes might happen again, unless the construction is finished.”

City Hall spokesman Mean Chanyada said on Thursday the authority will urge the construction company to pay close attention to technical standards.

Featured image: Large sinkhole opens on a busy road near Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh, Cambodia – June 8, 2016. Credit: SBN

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