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Water main break causes road collapse at Pennsylvania and Busti

An underground six-inch water main break Friday caused a section of road to collapse on Buffalo's West Side, at Busti Avenue and Pennsylvania Street.

The collapse started at about 4 p.m., according to Steven J. Stepniak, the city's commissioner of public works.

When city crews arrived, the found a fairly small hole at first, he said.

"When they started working on it and investigating ... they found quite a big hole," Stepniak said, adding that the water main break had been eating away at the subsurface material of the road, which began draining into the sewer line.

During work on the sewer, he said, city crews smelled gas emitting from a leaking gas line, which the utility company was called in to repair.

In the interim, water service was cut off to about 12 households in the vicinity. Late Friday, Stepniak said it would take two to four hours to restore water service. Crews were expected to return Saturday to finish repairing the sewer line. Street repairs were expected to be completed by Sunday.

"It's not that big of a deal once we get all the utilities repaired," Stepniak said.

He described the size of the hole as about 15 feet wide, 10 feet across and four feet deep.

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