NEW DETAILS: Crews work to repair massive sinkhole; partially collapsed sewer to blame

Some without water

DETROIT (WXYZ) - Action News has learned new details about what caused a massive sinkhole on Beaubien between Chandler and Smith in Detroit.

City officials say there was a partially collapsed sewer underground and that caused the road to start buckling. When a car drove over that patch of pavement Thursday evening, the road completely caved. When the car nosedived, it broke an 8-inch water main.

Crews are now repairing the sewer line and the water main. Then they will fill the hole. The estimated time on the repairs ranges from overnight to next week.

In the meantime, several homes in the neighborhood are without water.


Two women and a 2-year-old were rescued Thursday after their SUV was swallowed by the big hole in the ground.

The sinkhole is located on Beaubien, between Chandler and Smith. The SUV went nose-first into the sinkhole, with water up over the windshield and onto the front doors.

Video from the scene shows water covering the road. Neighbors say that a water main had been repaired in the last year, but recently a dip had appeared in the road.

A woman and her daughter and a granddaughter were able to get out of the car. They were taken from the scene by EMS. None of the injuries were serious.

Crews will work through the night to make repairs. It is unclear when water will be restored to affected residents.

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