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MIAMI GARDENS (CBSMiami) – A portion of the Florida Turnpike reopened Sunday morning after two huge sinkholes formed near Hard Rock Stadium in Miami gardens.
One sinkhole, then a second, crumbled approaching the northwest 199th Street exit to the stadium just after noon on Saturday.
The Florida Highway Patrol kept southbound traffic out of that portion by the Turnpike Extension that straddles Miami Gardens on the south and Miramar on the north. Crews blamed a busted water main break.
“No one was hurt,” said FHP Trooper Joe Sanchez. “That is our mission, always to protect the motorists. So we closed off the road and this is where we’re at right now. We’re assessing the damage to the road. We know that there’s a water main line that broke and caused this damage. We contacted all the authorities that are out here trying to resolve this problem.”
Sanchez pointed out its amazing no one drove over the soft spot. That would have been disastrous. At 75 miles an hour it would likely have killed anyone in the car.
Still, shutting down such an extensive part of the busy turnpike meant some delays for drivers.
“No one likes to be detained in traffic,” said one driver who sat in bumper to bumper traffic while being diverted. “But I do understand what it was about and I think they got the traffic through as soon as they could. I didn’t have to stay that long in traffic.”
But, there was just no other option. Crews needed to assess the road, shut off the water to keep more sinkholes from forming, tear up the ground, find the leak and patch up everything.