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Providence sinkhole fixed -- but not without drama

The sinkhole that caused Providence Road’s inbound lanes to be closed Tuesday is fixed, and the road is reopened Wednesday morning -- but not without some late-night drama.

Police say a Smart car slammed into the rear of a N.C. Department of Transportation dump truck working at the site Tuesday evening, leaving two people seriously injured.

The dump truck was part of the effort to have the hole repaired in time for the Wednesday morning commute -- an effort that met with success. Crews were able to complete repairs and resurface the road before 5 a.m.

DOT crews closed the inbound lanes again after the morning commute Wednesday, so they could apply a permanent cover to the roadway. The work was completed shortly after 1 p.m., a DOT spokeswoman said.

In Tuesday night’s wreck, police say a woman who was driving the small car and a passenger were injured in the crash. They were taken by Medic to Carolinas Medical Center with life-threatening injuries. The driver of the truck was not hurt.

The hole appeared before daybreak Tuesday. Police closed all lanes on Providence Road near Queens Road for about two hours, then reopened the outbound lanes about 7:45 a.m. However, the state DOT was called in, as were city crews. A storm drainage pipe under the road had to be repaired, and then crews filled the hole before resurfacing the roadway.

Officials are not sure if the heavy rain of the past week played a role in damaging the drainage pipe, but a number of rainwater overflows were reported by storm water service departments across the region in recent days.

Steve Lyttle: 704-358-6107.
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