Part of State Highway 1 in Hamilton was closed this morning for emergency repairs after a tomo or sinkhole caused by a broken stormwater line opened up.
The tomo appeared near the centreline of Lorne St near the Dowding St intersection, not far from Waikato Hospital.
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency initially closed the road in both directions to allow work crews to assess the damage.
Detours are in place via Ohaupo Rd and Normandy Ave, although one lane is now open for traffic heading south.
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Workers at the scene say that the stormwater line below the street has been damaged over the years and had broken. Rainwater coming through the line sucked the surrounding ground material through the pipe and washed it away causing the tomo.
Traffic driving over that part of the street last night, caused the top of the street to collapse, forming a 40cm crater, workers said. The crater reveals a 2 sqm hole that is 1.5 m deep.
It is hoped to be able to open the road by tonight.
To fix the tomo, workers were waiting for a concrete saw to cut the top and use a hydro excavation pump to remove leftover material as a piece of the stormwater line needs replacing.
As the area not only contains the waterline but also a gas and a sewer line, the workers are unable to use a digger to solve the issue.
Emergency services and residents are being given full access to Lorne St.