20-foot sinkhole opens in Manhattan street, just days after another SWALLOWED two cars on West Side


20-foot sinkhole opens up in the middle of NYC street – the third ground collapse since last week

  • A massive 20-foot sinkhole opened up in the middle of an Upper East Side street on Thursday an intersection at East 89th Street & York Ave
  • The ground collapse occurred just days after a sinkhole partially devoured two cars on the city’s West Side on Sunday
  • A third, smaller sinkhole occurred last Thursday on the lawn in Riverside Park, with one passerby saying water was pouring into it during a rainstorm that day
  • Cities nationwide remain on heightened awareness when it comes to infrastructure following last month’s deadly building collapse in Surfside, Fla 
  • No injuries or evacuations were reported for the Upper East Side sinkhole, which is approximately 15 by 15 feet in diameter and 20 feet deep 
  • Emergency workers could be seen expanding the sinkhole as they worked to patch it up with dirt and metal planks, with two buildings on the block losing access to water 
  • They eventually brought out a prime dewatering pump to empty out a nearby sewer next to Thursday’s sinkhole before a backhoe was used to pack the collapsed ground with fresh dirt 
  • Much of the city’s underground infrastructure has become outdated and brittle, with the average age of water mains being 66-years old 
  • ‘But this yet another reminder: NYC simply must invest more in upgrading our outdated infrastructure’ wrote NYC Councilmember Mark D. Levine

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A massive 20-foot sinkhole opened up in the middle of an Upper East Side street on Thursday, just days after a sinkhole nearly devoured two cars on the city’s West Side.

Thursday’s ground collapse, which occurred just before 9am at East 89th Street and York Avenue, is about 15 feet in diameter and 20 feet deep, according to the NYC Emergency Management agency.

Cities nationwide remain on heightened alert of infrastructure issues following the deadly building collapse on June 24 in Surfside, Florida. At least 94 people were confirmed dead at the building as of Monday.

No injuries or evacuations were reported on the Upper East Side, according to Citizen.   

The Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Transportation and Emergency Management agency responded. Con Edison was notified to inspect infrastructure at the sinkhole site.

Emergency workers could be seen expanding the sinkhole as they worked to patch it up with planks of metal, with two buildings on the block losing access to water as emergency crews continued to fix the ground collapse. 

The DOT is responsible for overseeing the city’s 6,300 miles of streets, with the department currently resurfacing the pavement throughout the five boroughs.

While the exact cause of Thursday and Sunday’s sinkholes has yet to be revealed, they typically occur when a water main or sewer collapsed due to old pipes giving way. They can also form when water-drainage patterns change, the US Geological Survey reports.

Emergency crews inspect Thursday’s sinkhole in Upper Manhattan and block off the area with caution tape and orange cones prior to starting work on patching it up

The Department of Environmental Protection responds to a massive 20-foot sinkhole opened up in the middle of an Upper East Side street on Thursday  at East 89th Street and York Ave

The Department of Environmental Protection responds to a massive 20-foot sinkhole opened up in the middle of an Upper East Side street on Thursday  at East 89th Street and York Ave

Emergency crews were on scene evaluating the road and working on repairs just before 9am on Thursday morning

Emergency crews were on scene evaluating the road and working on repairs just before 9am on Thursday morning

Workers could be seen expanding the sinkhole as they worked to patch it up, with two buildings on the block losing access to water

Workers could be seen expanding the sinkhole as they worked to patch it up, with two buildings on the block losing access to water

Crew members equipped with shovels, hardhats and jackhammers worked on fixing the sinkhole, laying down steel blocks to patch up the collapsed dirt and pavement

Crew members equipped with shovels, hardhats and jackhammers worked on fixing the sinkhole, laying down steel blocks to patch up the collapsed dirt and pavement

The Department of Environmental Protection was also on scene investigating the water and sewer infrastructure as emergency crews continued to work on patching the sinkhole Thursday morning

 The Department of Environmental Protection was also on scene investigating the water and sewer infrastructure as emergency crews continued to work on patching the sinkhole Thursday morning

Emergency workers eventually brought out a prime dewatering pump to empty out a nearby sewer next to Thursday’s sinkhole, before a backhoe was used to pack the collapsed ground with fresh dirt.

The New York Times reports that much of the city’s underground infrastructure has become outdated and brittle, with the average age of water mains being 66-years old. 

Last Thursday, a smaller sinkhole opened up in Riverside Park near West 103rd Street.

A passerby tweeted that water was pouring into it during a rainstorm earlier that day. ‘Dog walking neighbor saying water was flying into it during Thursday’s torrent,’ wrote @iragersh in a caption to his photo of last Thursday’s sinkhole. 

‘Will assume anywhere on that lawn could go at any time. Expect a lot of police tape in near future.’

It forced the MTA to reroute the M5 bus away from the area after cars fell partially into the hole, according to the New York Post.  

An onlooker snaps a pic of emergency workers as they tend to Thursday morning's sinkhole on the Upper East Side

An onlooker snaps a pic of emergency workers as they tend to Thursday morning’s sinkhole on the Upper East Side 

Workers bring out a prime dewatering pump to empty out a nearby sewer next to Thursday's sinkhole

Workers bring out a prime dewatering pump to empty out a nearby sewer next to Thursday’s sinkhole

A backhoe was then used to pack the collapsed ground with fresh dirt

A backhoe was then used to pack the collapsed ground with fresh dirt

Then on Sunday, two cars were partially swallowed by a third sinkhole on Riverside Drive and West 97th Street.  

‘But this is yet another reminder: NYC simply must invest more in upgrading our outdated infrastructure’, Councilmember Mark D. Levine tweeted following Sunday’s sinkhole. 

Levine, who represents the Upper West Side where the sinkhole opened up occurred, snapped a pic of the scene while noting that the city must invest more money in updating outdated streets.

‘Emergency crews are on scene. No injuries thankfully,’ Levine captioned the tweet

Levine’s comment comes just three days after the Surfside, Florida building collapse death toll rose to 94,  with the remains of the youngest victims, aged 5, 6 and 9 being found in building’s rubble on Monday.  

Two cars were partially devoured in this ground collapse on Sunday on Riverside Drive and 97th Street

Two cars were partially devoured in this ground collapse on Sunday on Riverside Drive and 97th Street

A huge sinkhole is exposed and blocked off with caution tape on Riverside and 97th Street on the Upper West Side in Manhattan

A huge sinkhole is exposed and blocked off with caution tape on Riverside and 97th Street on the Upper West Side in Manhattan

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