Sinkholes are quite common in certain areas of the U.S., but it’s not every day that you see one open up in Manhattan! On Thursday, a massive 20-ft long sinkhole appeared in the middle of an intersection right outside Katz’s Delicatessen on the Lower East Side. The culprit was a water main that ruptured underneath East Houston St. near Ludlow St., causing a flood of water to be unleashed. Soon after, part of the street also caved in. Thankfully, no one was hurt and several news sources reported that the pastrami remained intact as well.
All the trouble started when a 20-inch, cast-iron main dating back to 1959 broke near the famous eatery. At 10:30am, water began to flood the streets, making witnesses standing around Katz look like they were standing on an island surrounded by a muddy river. The sinkhole that resulted measured 20 feet by 15 feet.
Eventually, DEP workers managed to shut off the water while other agencies moved to close gas lines. The NY Daily News reports that five businesses and eight residential buildings were still without water as of early Thursday night. Oddly enough, the flooding seems to have had no effect on the electrical service in the area or the train lines running underneath. Traffic along East Houston St. was closed yesterday but should be reopened by now.