Central Falls home condemned after sinkhole opens up
By: Chloe Leshner
CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. (WLNE) -- A home in Central Falls is condemned after a sinkhole opened up in the driveway, almost swallowing up a car. Now 3 families are without a home.
The Fire Chief tells ABC 6 News he's never seen anything like this before and that the home owner is actually really lucky that the house is still standing.
Fire crews called in for a car versus house arrived to a very different situation Friday evening.
"It's very uncommon," says Central Falls Fire Chief Robert Bradley.
A minivan was halfway under a home after a sinkhole opened up, causing some chaos on Sylvian Street.
"There were a lot of people outside, the police were trying to get people to back it up," says neighbor Andre Monterio.
Things much calmer Saturday morning as contractors worked to clean up some of the mess. It all happened because the owners were doing some work in the basement. The house is older and the driveway is slanted and 45 feet of foundation simply washed away, leaving a huge gap between the house and the ground.
"It just completely caved in. The passenger side of the car was actually inside the cellar, the driver's side wheels were still in the driveway so we had quite a predicament," says Bradley.
The main concern was keeping the 3 story home from tipping over, contractors propping the house up on steel beams after the minivan was towed out.
"The house seems to be holding up very, very well, old construction built extremely well," says Bradley.
Everyone evacuated before fire crews arrived and luckily no one was hurt.
The call definitely out of the ordinary for responders.
"Everyone was kind of perplexed, something everyone said they had never seen before, even people who have been doing heavy rescue for 20 years. We were just kind of like dumbfounded," says Bradley.
Even though the building is structurally sound, no one is allowed inside until repairs are finished.