Quicksand is an interesting natural phenomenon -- it is actually solid ground that has been liquefied by a saturation of water. Quicksand is not a unique type of soil; it is usually just sand or another type of grainy soil. Quicksand is created when water saturates an area of loose sand and the ordinary sand is agitated.
Flowing underground water - The force of the upward water flow opposes the force of gravity, causing the granules of sand to be more buoyant.Earthquakes - The force of the shaking ground can increase the pressure of shallow groundwater, which liquefies sand and silt deposits. Vibration tends to enhance the quickness, so what is reasonably solid initially may become soft and then quick, according to Dr.
The vibration plus the water barrier reduces the friction between the sand particles and causes the sand to behave like a liquid. While quicksand can occur in almost any location where water is present, there are certain locations where it's more prevalent.


The next time you're at the beach, notice the difference in the sand as you stand on different parts of the beach that have varying levels of moisture.
If you move closer to the water, you'll notice that the sand that is moderately wet is even more tightly packed than the dry sand. When the water trapped in the batch of sand can't escape, it creates liquefied soil that can no longer support weight. The liquefied surface loses strength, causing buildings or other objects on that surface to sink or fall over.
A moderate amount of water creates the capillary attraction that allows sand particles to clump together.
If an excessive amount of water flows through the sand, it forces the sand particles apart. It can occur anywhere under the right conditions, according to Denise Dumouchelle, geologist with the United States Geological Survey (USGS).


When soil liquefies, as with quicksand, it loses strength and behaves like a viscous liquid rather than a solid, according to the Utah Geological Survey. This separation of particles causes the ground to loosen, and any mass on the sand will begin to sink through it. In the next section, you will find out how to save yourself if you happen to fall into a pit of quicksand.



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