Water main breaks in Arlington, fire truck stuck in sinkhole

5:14 PM, Jan 10, 2014   |    comments
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ARLINGTON, Va. (WUSA9) -- Firefighters responding to a water main break find themselves needing help.

A fire truck got stuck in a sinkhole after the rushing water had weakened the road at 17th and North Harrison Street in Arlington around 7 this morning.

"That's where I usually park!," says Bill Yoder. 

In Bill Yoder's normal parking spot was a 20 ton fire truck, leaning awkwardly to one side as it was stuck in a sinkhole.

"That would've swallowed up my car. The only reason I wasn't parked there is because, I actually came in last night and parked there went out to drop off some library books and came in a different direction and parked across the street. But I usually park in that exact spot," said Yoder.

Firefighters responding to 17th and North Harrison Street crested the hill when their fire truck started to sink, the road started to buckle.

"After they dropped into the street there was a little sense of urgency," said Battalion Chief Nathan Miller, Arlington Co. Fire.

The firefighters thought more of the road would give out, giving way to fear that the rest of the truck could be swallow up.

But the crew was fine. Four hours later their fire truck was hoisted out of the sinkhole.

There seems to be minimum damage to the fire truck, but the fire chief wants it to get checked out to be sure.

Water crews have been busy this week in our area because of the fluctuating temperatures. Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission is working on dozens of broken water pipes.

The one on 17th Street in Arlington, is a 6' water main break that has affected 5 homes. "I bought a cup of coffee and a gallon of water. We'll make due," said Yoder.

"It's some pretty big excitement for 17th Street, something like this hasn't really happened before," said Jennie Morgans.

Even after crews fix the broken pipe, repairs could go on for some time because there are cracks on 17th Street where the road has compromised for much of the block.

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