In Trumbull County, a large sinkhole closed a portion of Mahoning Avenue in Warren while crews worked to find out what caused the problem and fix it.

Spotting a problem in the road — drivers Monday morning called dispatchers to report it.

Caller: “There’s a pretty decent sized sinkhole starting in the middle of Mahoning Avenue.”

One of those calls came from a Lordstown School Bus Driver who just dropped off students at TCTC.

Caller: “When I came back it was getting bigger.”

It’s on Mahoning Avenue between Hall and Freeman streets. Even though the hole is only 30 inches wide on the surface, Assistant Fire Chief Steve Williams said it runs eight feet deep and 10 to 12 feet wide.

Road crews say an old broken clay pipe was to blame. 

It caused stormwater runoff to enter a manhole and wash away the ground underneath the surface of the road.

“Unfortunately, the only way you can find out is usually when it caves in,” said Sewer Systems Manager Ted Montecalvo.

Because of the location of this sinkhole, it had the possibility of becoming a very dangerous situation.

“Luckily we were notified and caught it in time but as you can see with the crews working, behind this thing has a depth of about 15-18 feet so easily capable of swallowing an automobile,” said Director of Public Safety and Service Enzo Cantalamessa.

Mahoning Avenue was closed to traffic but has since reopened, as crews with the city’s Water Pollution Control Department worked to fix the problem.

“Once we get the manhole on the bottom repaired then we’re gonna fix the storm, it’s a matter of just working from the bottom up, so to say,” Montecalvo said.