Sinkhole opens up on southwest Portland street - KPTV - FOX 12

Sinkhole opens up on southwest Portland street

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A sinkhole opened up when a sewer link broke in southwest Portland.

It happened at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday on Southwest Green Avenue near Osage Street.

Portland Bureau of Transportation workers said a garbage truck had just driven over the street when the sinkhole opened up.

No vehicles or people fell in, and there are no reports of any injuries or other damage.

"It's noisy and smelly," said Katie Terrill who lives in an apartment next to the sinkhole.

Crews are expected to be in the area throughout the night securing the road. Workers will be back out Thursday to clear the sewer line, since it's filled with dirt.

Green Avenue remained closed Wednesday evening, forcing some neighbors to park their car a block away and walk home.

"I'm glad to see the city is here working on it," neighbor Howard Hecht said. "Fortunately for me, I can walk to work, so I don't have to worry about my vehicle."

No service has been interrupted to anyone in the area.

Scott Burns, a geology professor at PSU, said most sinkholes occur naturally when water erodes limestone under then ground. The ground then collapses into the cavity beneath it. However, here in the Northwest, Burns said almost all sinkholes are manmade.

"Here in the Pacific Northwest, 99% of the time, when we have sinkholes, it is a broken water line beneath the surface," he said.

The city doesn't have an estimate on how long it will take to repair the sinkhole, but it could take a couple of days.

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