In this episode of when streets attack, we go to St. Louis where Toyota Camrys are on the menu. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Jordan Westerberg and his fiancée stopped by the downtown YMCA for an early morning workout. When they came out, the car was gone. At first Westerberg thought it had been towed because there were street workers everywhere, perhaps getting ready to close off part of the street for repair.
He wasn't entirely wrong.
The sinkhole opened up on North Sixth Street, not far from the city’s famous Gateway Arch. The hole is estimated to be about 10 feet across and 20 feet deep – easily large enough to swallow a mid-size sedan. Fortunately nobody was in the vicinity of the car when it became an appetizer, so there were no injuries.
As to the cause of the massive collapse, the water gushing from a broken pipe near the bottom of the hole seems to be the obvious answer but nobody really knows for sure. City officials with the water department say the main could have been ruptured during the collapse, or the main could've ruptured and caused the collapse. According to one source, it’s possible that the soil in the area could’ve just moved or settled, creating a big underground hole that finally gave out.
To give this all a bit more drama, there’s some speculation that a water main break in the area last November could’ve opened up the hole beneath the street. There’s a bit of controversy surrounding that break, as a utility company had been working in the area when it ruptured but claimed it wasn’t responsible.
In the meantime, we hope Westerberg had decent insurance for his Toyota. Looks like he will be needing it.