Government Public Works

Sinkhole Leads to Lane Closures on Trout Brook Drive in West Hartford

A sinkhole opened up Tuesday on Trout Brook Drive north of Asylum Avenue. Photo courtesy of John Phillips

Temporary repairs are being made to the sinkhole at Trout Brook Drive and Asylum Avenue by West Hartford’s Department of Public Works, and traffic is expected to be impacted through Wednesday morning’s rush hour.

By Ronni Newton

A sinkhole that opened up on Trout Brook Drive just north of Asylum Avenue has led to the closure of the left northbound lane and is also impacting the southbound left turn lane.

“It was a 21-inch stormwater pipe that failed and created a cavity in the road,” Director of Public Works John Phillips said Tuesday afternoon.

A minor motor vehicle incident, with minor injuries, occurred when the road caved in, he said.

Traffic will be limited to one northbound lane only on Trout Brook north of Asylum through Wednesday morning’s rush hour, Phillips said, while Public Works crews add temporary backfill to the hole and cover it with a steel plate for safety. The southbound left turn lane is also partially obstructed, but is accessible at the light to turn onto Asylum, he said.

Eventually the road will need to be opened up completely for the stormwater pipe to be repaired.

Phillips said that Public Works and the Metropolitan District Commission both responded when the sinkhole was reported, to determine what had happened and which agency was responsible for it. Since it’s a stormwater pipe, not a sanitary sewer pipe, it’s the town’s responsibility.

Phillips expressed thanks to the MDC, and West Hartford Police, for their assistance.

“It could be related to local street flooding last Thursday and yesterday,” Phillips said. The area of the roadway that collapsed was the site of flooding on both occasions, and while the water did drain from the roadway on its own, it could have led to the sinkhole.

Phillips did not have information about the age of the stormwater pipe, but said that it was not in an area that had been recently worked on.

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