Gas Leak Repaired While Issues Surrounding Sinkhole Grow

FRASER (WWJ) – Residents in the Kings Forest Condominium complex on 15 Mile between Utica and Hayes in Fraser are faced with the challenge of finding new ways to get in and out of their complex after a sinkhole began on the eve of Christmas.

Laurie Garfarlo, who lives in the area, says that it took her about an hour to gain access to her home Monday night and Tuesday looked like an ominous challenge to get out the complex and make her way into work. A temporary sewer pipe blocked her path.

Workers say the next thing to do is to create a temporary road for residents but couldn’t give a time frame for completion.

Meanwhile, a natural gas leak has been repaired in the area of homes already compromised by the massive sinkhole.

On Monday, sewage had been pumped into the Clinton River to prevent flooding in the area.

“We have shut all the pumps off to the Clinton River and there is nothing actively being pumped into the river at this time — I was also told that barring any weather related events or a total collapse of that line there is no plan to reactivate them — unless it is an absolute emergency as was the case yesterday,” says Fraser Mayor Joe Nichols.

About two dozen Fraser residents won’t be allowed back into their homes for two weeks — forced out after a sinkhole, about 250 feet long and 100 feet wide, formed on Christmas Eve.

Three houses were deemed unlivable — and one home is slowly falling into the sinkhole.

Mike Racine lives right next to that house:

“We’re staying with some friends from church … some good people, so that’s nice,” said Racine. “There are only a couple of them that appear to be in danger… everybody else in here is relatively safe — it’s just, they did this so we could get quick access and apparently they are going to put a road in here – which will be fun, because that’s my bedroom.”

Referring to a wood path between his and his neighbors — a temporary road being prepared for residents to be able to access the subdivision.

Nichols who says another community meeting has been scheduled for January 9th at 6 p.m. inside of Fraser City Hall. With a “fix” at the site expected take months, the closure of 15 Mile Road between Utica and Hayes expected to last into next summer.

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