City has new weapons in the war on sinkholes - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

City has new weapons in the war on sinkholes

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 Sinkholes have been opening up all over Toledo. And the city says with the aging infrastructure, you can expect it to keep getting worse.

The video of a car swallowed up by a giant sinkhole at Detroit and Bancroft last year was shown all over the world.

Toledo's manager of Sewer and Drainage Services Kelly O'Brien feels sorry for the driver, but says it could have been much worse. "It could have been a fuel taker, it could have been a city bus."

She says it's going to keep happening. "Like everything, with people also, as we age we fall apart, so yeah, a lot of them are falling apart."

O'Brien says drivers should keep an eye out for dips in the road that might indicate a problem, but admits that sometimes they open up without warning. She says the city has been working hard on preventing sinkholes.

One weapon is a truck that can see what's happening inside sewer lines and spot issues. "The more TV work we do, the more we can find the problems and the cheaper the fix."

The city hopes to have another truck equipped with a camera later this year. Plus they are trying new technology such as pipe patches, that take a third of the time and money of traditional digs.

O'Brien says they hope to try more new methods in the next few months. "You stick the probe down into the pavement and then you shoot the grout down in through the probe, and it actually expands and surround the pipe. It fills all the voids that's under the pavement and around the pipe."

But she reminds people that there are thousands of miles of sewer to get through. She hopes to double sinkhole prevention efforts when the new truck is added. Training on the new technology is scheduled to being within the next couple of months.



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