IDOT works to fill sinkhole

A sinkhole swallowed up half a road in our area. It’s on a section of Highway 146 in Hardin County, Illinois, near Rosiclare.

The Illinois Department of Transportation started taking action to fill that sinkhole around 10:30 p.m. Sunday and continued throughout Monday.

IDOT says the sinkhole measures 31 feet long, 20 feet wide, and was up to 8 feet deep. Operations Maintenance Field Engineer Ryan Guthman says crews first used a backhoe to remove dirt and gravel debris.

Once we got the loose edges knocked down, we performed a nice saw cut to start the repair,” Guthman said.

The next step is filling up the hole with large pieces of rock that they call rip rap. Crews will finish filling it up with bedding stone Tuesday as a temporary solution while they continue monitoring the sinkhole. “To make sure that we don’t get any additional potholes or if there’s any sinkage with the rains that are coming on Wednesday,” Guthman said.

So far, the ground hasn’t shifted since IDOT came on the scene. As for a cause, Guthman says that’s not their responsibility.

“It may be related to an abandoned mine shaft, but we are unaware of those details. Right now, the main thing is we want to get it opened up and monitored to make sure it doesn’t continue to sink.

The Mines and Minerals Department under the Illinois Department of Natural Resources could be the agency to determine whether an old mine shaft is the cause of this sinkhole. We called and left them a message at their Benton, Illinois, office but have not heard back yet.

IDOT is hoping to open it back up by the end of work day Tuesday.

Crews plan to make a permanent fix by pouring the road with concrete sometime this week or next. IDOT wants to keep checking for any movement at the site and wait for the rainy weather this week to pass. 

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