A sinkhole ripped apart a Brooklyn street and slowed down subway service Tuesday, officials said.
A leak from a four-foot water main washed away dirt and concrete and appears to be the source of a 15-foot deep hole in Sunset Park on Fifth Avenue and 64th Street that formed shortly before 7 a.m., DEP and FDNY officials said.
No one was hurt.
“There has not been any reported loss of physical property, or harm caused to any persons,” said City Councilman Carlos Menchaca, who represents Sunset Park.
Streets were closed to traffic between 63rd and 65th streets, and between Fifth and Sixth Avenues.
Those streets are expected to be closed for at least the next few days, but it was not clear yet how long the repairs would take.
Residents and workers were concerned.
“I was scared and nervous,” said Estelle Cruz, 28, a Sunset Park resident who works at the Fifth Avenue shop J & L Multi Service near the sinkhole. “It was like a movie.”
Her son Michael Licarvo, 9, said there was a loud noise when the street collapsed. “It was like a firecracker blowing up,” he said. “It looks huge. It looks like a tornado hole.”
The family said they had smelled gas the weekend before, but it was not clear if it was related. A
Con Edison spokesman said anyone who smells a gas odor should call 911, and that they did not see any calls in the area about gas.
The precise cause of the sinkhole is still under investigation, the DEP said.
The sinkhole occurred near a portal where the N train goes from above ground to the Fourth Avenue tunnel.
Trains were running at speeds of 10 mph as a precaution in that area, but went to normal speeds later in the afternoon.
Water on nearby streets was also turned off.
Aaron Yang, 31, of Sunset Park said there was no access to clean water at the hardware store he works for on Fifth Avenue hardwore store he works for. But he was glad there were no injuries.
“It’s a good thing nobody got hurt. The policemen are doing a good job,” he said. “It’s pretty deep. It’s unusual.”
Con Edison said it would be working with the DEP over the next 36 hours so that it could safely make repairs, but that it did not expect any customers to lose power. Its crews have been working to cut electricity from any live cables so that DEP workers are safe while working in the sinkholes, according to spokesman Bob McGee.
An OEM spokesperson added that Con Edison was expected to work on cutting the electricity until early tomorrow, and then repairs would be assessed in the morning.
Water main breaks have affected subway service more significantly this year.
In April, a water main break flooded the 14th Street station and tracks in Chelsea and snarled service on three lines.