Sinkhole Shuts Down Portion of Peach St - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Sinkhole Shuts Down Portion of Peach St

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Water has been restored to customers who lost their supply after a water main break on Tuesday afternoon, but the huge hole it caused in the road on Peach Street will shut down three blocks of the busy road until Thursday.

The break happened just after 1:30 p.m. and created a hole abut the size of a truck, spanning an entire lane wide at 29th and Peach Street. Crews from Erie Water Works readily repaired the break, replacing an eight-foot length of pipe. They also restored water supply to the nine residences impacted.

But three blocks of Peach Street- 26th Street to 29th Street - will be closed until the hole can be repaired.

A number of factors could've caused the break, one possibility: changes in water temperature.

"We're staring to see charges in the temp of the water. I  noticed it probably went up probably 20 degrees from last week to this week," said Paul Vojtek, CEO at Erie Water Works. "Sometimes that causes air to be released and usually when you see a big break like this, that's related to in the lines," he said.

Or the cause could've been caused by general wear and tear on the system., which is more than a century old and has experienced a lot of stress from the harsh winter.

"We're going  to do the best we can to prevent breaks, but it's a big system .We'll do our best and hopefully we can keep the impact to our customers at a minimum," Vojtek said.

Residents in this neighborhood say it was quite the sight when the break happened.

"I was actually sitting in the house and it was just amazing. I was sitting just by the window and it (water) just started flowing down the street," said Ruby Berry, who lives in the 2700 block of Peach Street. "We didn't know where it came from but the whole street was flooded. It was really high, like over my feet and the kids couldn't come outside, she said.

Drivers who pass the 2600-2900 of Peach Street will have to alter their commutes until Thursday.
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