A sinkhole that opened up in a Chicago South Side neighborhood on Sunday night continues to threaten a nearby home.
While water service has returned to residents affected by the 14-foot sinkhole in the West Pullman neighborhood, the area remains under a boil advisory until further notice, NBC Chicago reports. Authorities began receiving calls about the giant sinkhole at around 10:45 p.m. Sunday night.
By Monday, residents said the hole grew significantly, taking up half the road -- flooding basements with two feet of water. A broken water main is believed to have caused the large sinkhole, which measures 20 by 80 feet, ABC 7 reports.
"It's scary," said Deloris Alexander, whose home sits next to the hole. "It's really scary. The first thing that came to my mind is that everything [in the front yard] would sink right in."
Crews have blocked off the road and began to repair the water main that might have started off as a small leak but eventually eroded and gave way. "Depending on what's underneath it, we're hoping by the end of the week we should have the street repaired," Chicago Water Department Deputy Commissioner Bill Bresnahan said.
Christopher Carpenter, a nearby resident, witnessed the sinkhole form firsthand. A neighbor knocked on his door Sunday night asking if he had water in his basement.
“I was asking her, ‘Why would you ask me, you know, something like that?’” Carpenter said. He then noticed that water was shooting out of his front lawn in four different places. “It looked like Buckingham Fountain,” he told the Chicago Sun Times.
Carpenter said “it was like a big boom” as he saw part of the street cave in. “They all started screaming and yelling and running,” Carpenter said, describing how his sister, daughter, niece and nephew reacted. “And it did kind of scare me as well.”
Water had to be shut off in a two-block radius surrounding the sinkhole as crews worked to repair it. "We will definitely get the water back on today," Bresnahan said Tuesday. "As far as repairing the street and getting the street back into drivable condition, it's going to be down for a couple of days."
This isn’t the first sinkhole in Chicago's South Side. In April, a massive sinkhole opened up and swallowed two cars, and a third fell inside. It was caused by a broken water main that was installed in 1915 but gave out and breached the city’s sewer below.
"They're indicative of an old infrastructure," Water Department Commissioner Thomas Power said, pointing to the sinkholes that have opened up across the city. "There was no visible warning on the street."
Originally from Montreal, Zoë Mintz joined IBTimes in March 2013. A graduate from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, her writing has...