This afternoon around 5:30pm, a large sinkhole opened up at the intersection of Lake and 2nd Avenue. Neighbors reported that a car drove over the area and shortly after, the ground began sinking in on itself.
We stopped by the sinkhole at 6:45pm tonight, and helicopters from two news channels were still circling overheard.
A DPW crew was there inspecting the hole, and the entire intersection was closed off with police caution tape. No repairs were being made yet.
Several streets were closed off from traffic leading into the intersection, including the first and third blocks of Lake Street, and 2nd Avenue between California and Lake.
The surface of the sinkhole looked like it had been covered with fresh asphalt recently, and a neighbor on scene confirmed that the area had been patched in recent weeks.
She drove over the intersection earlier in the day with her husband, and remarked that the ground was uneven and appeared to be sinking.
It’s unclear what caused the sinkhole, but typically it’s due to a break in a sewer or water line that then erodes the surface under the street. When we visited the scene, there was no sign of water and no smell of sewage, but there was definitely an absence of foundation under the street.
UPDATE: KTVU, who was manning one of the choppers over the scene, reports, “It is believed that the sinkhole was caused by an old 21-inch sewer line failure.”
There were several gawkers at the intersection, mostly neighbors who lived close by and wondered why helicopters were circling overhead. Guess it’s a slow news day.
Try to avoid the area for tonight and probably tomorrow, as crews will be assessing and repairing the sinkhole which is pretty large.
Thanks to reader Stacy L. for the tip.
UPDATE 5/8/13: SFAppeal reports that it could take as long as 2 weeks to repair the sinkhole, which was caused by the rupture of a 19-inch brick sewer line.
Photo by Stacy L.