Toronto

'It was terrifying': Man escapes with minor injuries after car falls into Markham sinkhole

Residents of Thornhill Street in Markham say they feel partially trapped in their homes as city crews worked through the day Saturday to cover a massive sinkhole.

City crews have been working in the area since late April, replacing old water mains

A man driving home in Markham around 10 p.m. on Friday had a bit of a scare when his car fell into a sinkhole close to his house. (Jeremy Cohn/CBC)

Residents of Thornhill Street in Markham say they feel partially trapped in their homes as city crews worked through the day Saturday to cover a massive sinkhole. The residents were also cleaning up the mess left by a leaking water main overnight.

A man driving home in the area around 10 p.m. on Friday had a bit of a scare when his car fell into the sinkhole close to his house. He sustained minor injuries and was transported to hospital by EMS.

"His son tried to go and pull him out [but he too] almost went into the sinkhole," one resident, Iman Jalili, told CBC News on Saturday.

"It was terrifying. I called the city so they sent the fire department, [and] the police were here."

This was the scene on Thornhill Street in Markham on Friday after a broken water main caused flooding and developed a sinkhole. (Jeremy Cohn/CBC)

Jalili explained that crews have been working in the area since late April, replacing old water mains.

He said the problem started earlier in the evening on Friday when one of the water mains developed a leak.

"[The] broken main was sending water onto the street … and it created a sinkhole," Jalili said.

"The water had no place to go, it was just flooding everywhere," he said, adding that some of his neighbours had their basement flooded.

City crews worked through the day on Saturday to cover a massive sinkhole that developed in their area overnight. (CBC)

Jalili said sewers in the area, which would normally serve as a catchment, had been closed off for the on-going work.

Another resident, Sherwin Desser, says he can no longer use his driveway because of a massive hole which has been dug at the entrance to his home.

He says he has no idea when his family will be able to use their car again.

"It's been a bad scene," Desser told CBC News.

"They're responsible. But what have they told me? Nothing; because it's the weekend and they are not working," he said of city staff.

Sherwin Desser points to a massive hole in front of his house, which he said prevents his family from using their car. (CBC)

Desser says the only solace for him and his neighbours is a promise from the city that "when they're finished, it will protect us from flooding. But in the meantime, it's no fun."

With files from CBC's Adrian Cheung

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