Storm causes large sinkhole in busy Ellsworth intersection

Posted Aug. 02, 2011, at 10:38 p.m.

ELLSWORTH, Maine — Department of Transportation crews had to rush early Tuesday to fill an 8- to 10-foot-deep sinkhole that developed in the middle of downtown Ellsworth.

The sinkhole developed at the busy intersection of Route 1, State Street and Water Street after storms that brought heavy rain and damaging lightning to the region Monday night.

Mark Latti, a DOT spokesman, said an old, underground drainage system located 8 to 10 feet below the street was undermined during the storm. The resulting sinkhole was roughly 4 to 6 feet wide and had to be filled with 10 yards of gravel.

Crews worked to fill and patch the road before the morning commute. But Latti said the fix is a temporary one.

“We plan on making a more permanent repair, but we want to make sure we diagnose the problem properly first,” Latti said. “So we will be investigating that drainage system with an underground camera.”