Dramatic images show huge 15ft wide sinkhole that swallowed up road

A huge 15ft sinkhole swallowed up part of a city street in a flood which forced homes to be evacuated.

Dramatic photos show the tarmac crumbled and gave way to form a 15ft by 20ft trench the Liverpool neighbourhood of Old Swan after a water main burst on Friday.

As water gushed out from underground, firefighters were drafted in to tackle the flooding and residents were told to leave their homes until the situation was under control.

With emergency repairs focusing on the broken water main, the road will be cordoned off for weeks until the sink hole is filled in and judged safe again.

Firefighters worked to restrict the flow of water as road closures were put in place. Water supplies to some homes in the area were cut off for some time, the Liverpool Echo reports.

Photos taken after sunrise show collapsed sections of road, debris and a large cordon as United Utilities staff carried out repairs on Saturday.

United Utilities, a water company, later said supplies were back on for customers but the affected road will need to be closed for at least two weeks for repairs.

In a statement the firm said: "A large water main burst on Prescot Road yesterday evening which caused some customers in the area to have no water or poor water pressure.

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"Overnight, our engineers diverted water supplies through other parts of the water network so that the burst pipe could be shut off. Our water tankers are also pumping supplies into the system to boost the pressure for customers.

"Water supplies are now back on but customers may notice some discolouration to their supply.

"This can happen after the changes in flow caused by a burst and it is due to naturally-occurring sediment being disturbed in the pipes.

"This will settle down and customers can help it to clear by letting the kitchen tap run at a gentle trickle.

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"Repair work will be getting under way today, and the road will need to stay closed for at least two weeks while these repairs are carried out.

"We thank customers for their patience in the meantime and we apologise for any inconvenience."

The fire service said earlier: “The incident has generated running water which is affecting the junction of Prescot Road 500 metres west and Green Lane 100 metres north.

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“Road closures are in place and several properties in the area are being affected.

“The suspected cause is a ruptured water main but this is not yet confirmed.

“Crews are working to restrict the flow of water and utilities companies are in attendance.”

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