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Creepy Mystery Hole Opens Up in Long Beach Backyard

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Hole via Press-Telegram, Steube's son investigating via KTLA

A Long Beach dog nearly fell into a sudden 18 foot sinkhole last week, and no one's been able to explain yet where the hole came from. The hole happens to be next door to an oil well dug in 1925 and sealed 12 feet below ground in 1950, but a preliminary report from the California State Department of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources says "The rectangular shape with smooth sides is not consistent with a circular oil or natural gas well," according to the Press-Telegram. Betty Schmid has owned the house adjacent to the sinkhole since 1971, and her grandson, John Steube, has been living there for about 15 years. Schmid herself lives next door at the house with the 1925 well in the yard. Besides appearing out of nowhere, the hole could have mysterious health effects too. Steube, whose bedroom window is next to the hole, says he's been having respiratory problems and nausea that took him to the hospital the day after the hole opened, but that his coughing subsides when he leaves the house. The LA Times reports that he's "barricaded the cave-in with chairs and pieces of old board, and his plumber has surrounded it with caution tape." We might recommend an additional Ecto-Containment Unit, just to be safe.
· Hole in Long Beach man's backyard not oil, gas well, officials say [Press-Telegram]