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Road collapses, swallowing SUV in Laguna Beach

Authorities in Laguna Beach are still trying to determine what caused a water main to burst over the weekend, creating a flood and a large sinkhole that swallowed an SUV.

The pipe burst in a residential area along Sunset Avenue sometime early in the morning.

“Around 6:30 (a.m.) I saw bubbling in the street,” neighbor Mike Tompkins told KTLA. “Around 7:45, I heard a big, Old Faithful-type of geyser sound and came down to see the rushing of the hillside away.”

The fast-moving, muddy water caused the street to collapse onto the hillside, severing a natural gas line and swallowing a black SUV.

The water main burst Sunday morning, damaging a natural gas pipeline and swallowing an SUV. March 5, 2023. (Torre Menne)

Workers from SoCal Gas were able to mitigate the gas leak by 10 a.m. allowing residents to safely return to their homes.

The South Coast Water District is trying to find out if the recent rain storms played a role in the road’s collapse.

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