TIME Japan

That ‘Unprecedented’ Sinkhole in Japan? It’s Already Fixed

A combination photo shows a sinkhole in Fukuoka, Japan, on Nov. 8, 2016, left, and fixed a week later on Nov. 15, 2016.
Kyodo News/AP A combination photo shows a sinkhole in Fukuoka, Japan, on Nov. 8, 2016, left, and fixed a week later on Nov. 15, 2016.

The mayor says the affected area is 30 times stronger

That was quick, and impressive. Nearly a week after a giant sinkhole opened on a five-lane street in a southwestern Japanese city, all appears normal.

The 65-foot-deep sinkhole opened early on Nov. 8 in the business district of Fukuoka and was thought to be the result of work on an underground subway line extension. Slabs of pavement, traffic lights and utility poles were swallowed when the road caved in; some locals were evacuated; and disruptions in gas and water supplies and cell phone signals were reported, as were power cuts. Soichiro, Takashima, the city’s mayor, called the sinkhole “unprecedented.”

Within a few days, the hole was filled in with a mixture of cement and sand. According to CNN, it then took some two days to restore damaged utility lines and resurface the affected area of the road.

Takashima was quoted as saying the section of road was 30 times stronger than it had been before the collapse.

On Tuesday, pedestrians and vehicles again made use of the busy throughway.

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