Defective cordon blamed as bakkie drives into giant sinkhole

2012-04-18 00:00

A BAKKIE was swallowed by a huge sinkhole that gaped open on the corner of Voortrekker Road and Quality Street in Durban yesterday morning.

ER24 spokesperson Werner Vermaak said the driver was on his way to work when he found himself in the drink in the massive crater.

Vermaak said: “When [paramedics] arrived at the scene they found the bakkie with only its rear end on the tarmac.

“The driver of the vehicle managed to get out of his vehicle before paramedics arrived on the scene.”

Bystanders told ER24 that the sinkhole developed late on Monday afternoon and was not properly cordoned off.

“It appeared as if it had filled with water during the night, making it difficult to see,” said Vermaak.

Metro Police spokesperson Eugene Msomi said no one was injured, but ER24 said the driver was treated for shock and other injuries and taken to hospital. “The road is being fixed as we speak,” he said yesterday.

He said he was not sure what might have caused gigantic cavity on the road.

Design engineer Malcolm Barron said sinkholes are caused by underlying water.

“Water underneath washes away soil especially when a water sewer main breaks,” he said.

eThekwini Municipality said it was still investigating.

Meanwhile, the sinkhole that developed hidden under West Street, Pietermaritzburg, last week has been repaired. That hole was also estimated to have been big enough to swallow a car, if the tar had given way.

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