NEWTON FALLS, Ohio (WKBN) – A major artery that links Warren and Ravenna is closed because of the heavy rains that fell overnight Tuesday into Wednesday.
Road closed signs were set up along a section of state Route 5 in Braceville Wednesday morning between state Route 82 and state Route 534. A culvert underneath the four-lane highway collapsed, causing part of the road to give way and form a sinkhole.
Ohio Department of Transportation officials said they must wait for the water to recede before they can determine how bad the damage is.
“Right now, for the safety of the motoring public, we want to keep the road closed. Once the water starts to recede a little bit, we are going to get out there and do some testing to further determine the structural integrity of the road,” ODOT spokesman Brent Kovacs said.
The road is expected to be closed for at least the next 24 hours. That was not good news for Mark Karpenko of Braceville, who lives about a block away from the sinkhole.
“I hope they make haste on it because that is going to be a heck of a hassle routing around the way the detours go,” he said.
The water in his backyard is finally starting to recede.
“Every five, 10 minutes, thunder rumbled the house, lightning flickered every window. It rained consistently all night,” Karpenko said.