Sinkhole repaired in Florence - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Sinkhole repaired in Florence

Crews finishing up day 3 of repairs on Wisteria and Edisto intersection. Crews finishing up day 3 of repairs on Wisteria and Edisto intersection.

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - The city of Florence spent three full days making repairs to the intersection of Edisto Drive and Wisteria in Florence. Early Tuesday morning, Public Works was called after neighbors reported low water pressure.

Michael Hemingway, Utilities Director for the City of Florence, said, “The guys were out here investigating and they walked by a storm drain and heard water running from it ,so then once we isolated the water system shortly thereafter the road started caving in slowly.”

It was a domino effect, Hemingway said. A six-foot-deep sinkhole was caused after crews discovered six and 12-inch water main lines broken, a 4-inch SCE&G gas main line broken and an SCDOT 18-inch storm drainage water pipe that burst.

Hemingway explained, “The surface level and salt gave away and there was nothing to support all three of those lines, and then the lines collapsed on their own pressure because there was no ground to support beneath them.”

Crews worked three full days working for at least 12 hours since the problem began. On Thursday, they started to lay sand and clay gravel to fill the hole.

"The pipes are not old piping, its relatively by pipping age, in good condition, but once the under support of the soil below the pipe washed away then there was nothing to support the pipe so it couldn’t hold itself up," said Hemingway.

Drivers have been rerouted at Claremont drive to the west side and back to Second Loop to reach Edisto again. Hemingway said no one could tell there was an issue with the pipes from the surface until the hole caved in.

June Broadway and her husband have lived on Wisteria street for the past 53 years and talked with WMBF News. 

“It was a very big hole probably big enough for two cars," said Broadway, adding that it has been a mess, but she is thankful for the support from the city. "We have had a police officer parked out here all night long watching the hole they had in the road.”

Along with making sure neighbors are aware of the construction progress happening right outside their door, Broadway said, “They’ve just been great, the police department, the city of Florence, the state and the gas department have all been working very hard.”

Hemingway said, “You just try to be prepared and respond as quickly as you can once something like this does occur.”

The city said the gravel will sit over the weekend and asphalt will be laid Monday and Tuesday and everything should be back to normal.

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