St Johns Road sinkhole: road could be closed "for four days or more"

Watford Observer: Picture by Charlotte Ikonen Picture by Charlotte Ikonen

A main road in central Watford has been closed after a sinkhole has opened up underneath it.

Hertfordshire County Council has shut off St Johns Road, between Woodford Road and Clarendon Road, this morning to carry out an investigation.

The authority said the closure could be in place for four days or more.

An initial investigation started last week after severe cracking was road by the junction by Clarendon Road.

However these were stopped after investigators became concerned about undermining the road and footway any further. 

A geotechnical engineer, who was present during the investigations said it is possible that there is a sink hole deep down in the underlying chalk.

Today council workmen are due to start further investigations to excavate a hole from the footway to the middle of the road. 

This will require the road being closed for all traffic.

Comments (10)

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11:06am Mon 10 Mar 14

E.Coli says...

this sink hole has been there since Affinity repaired a damaged water main December 2013 and is filled in with Polish beer cans and some rubble, there where 2 contractors there Friday armed with a bucket of gravel though.
this sink hole has been there since Affinity repaired a damaged water main December 2013 and is filled in with Polish beer cans and some rubble, there where 2 contractors there Friday armed with a bucket of gravel though. E.Coli
  • Score: 1

11:29am Mon 10 Mar 14

pepsiman says...

Its quite near the Police Station - I wonder if they are looking into it?
Its quite near the Police Station - I wonder if they are looking into it? pepsiman
  • Score: 6

12:23pm Mon 10 Mar 14

angryangryangry says...

Isnt that just a pothole?
Isnt that just a pothole? angryangryangry
  • Score: 3

12:30pm Mon 10 Mar 14

E.Coli says...

angryangryangry wrote:
Isnt that just a pothole?
It is very large hole 2x2 Metres.
[quote][p][bold]angryangryangry[/bold] wrote: Isnt that just a pothole?[/p][/quote]It is very large hole 2x2 Metres. E.Coli
  • Score: 3

12:51pm Mon 10 Mar 14

S/O man says...

It's a secret Tube line to Watford Junction
It's a secret Tube line to Watford Junction S/O man
  • Score: 2

1:06pm Mon 10 Mar 14

TRT says...

There was another depression a few years ago in Clarendon Road just at the foot of the central traffic signal island on the Junction side... the deep, sagging tarmac type that's a clue to a void underneath. I hope it's just poor backfilling and not a large cavern that's cracking upwards.

Also, the closure of that road is going to mean a huge detour for people wanting to use the short stay car park. The signed diversion down Gartlett and Estcourt isn't suitable due to the narrowness of the roads, you can't use Queens Road, because of all the gas works, or Broadway to Radlett Road to Orphenage Road for the same reason, so you'd have to use Clarendon Road, Waterfields Way, Stephenson Way, Radlett Road, Orphanage Road and finally onto Woodford Road. It's not a suitable route for double deckers either.
There was another depression a few years ago in Clarendon Road just at the foot of the central traffic signal island on the Junction side... the deep, sagging tarmac type that's a clue to a void underneath. I hope it's just poor backfilling and not a large cavern that's cracking upwards. Also, the closure of that road is going to mean a huge detour for people wanting to use the short stay car park. The signed diversion down Gartlett and Estcourt isn't suitable due to the narrowness of the roads, you can't use Queens Road, because of all the gas works, or Broadway to Radlett Road to Orphenage Road for the same reason, so you'd have to use Clarendon Road, Waterfields Way, Stephenson Way, Radlett Road, Orphanage Road and finally onto Woodford Road. It's not a suitable route for double deckers either. TRT
  • Score: 3

1:09pm Mon 10 Mar 14

TRT says...

E.Coli wrote:
this sink hole has been there since Affinity repaired a damaged water main December 2013 and is filled in with Polish beer cans and some rubble, there where 2 contractors there Friday armed with a bucket of gravel though.
The surface has been sagging and cracking there across the whole road surface ever since I can remember... since sometime in 2012 there's been a noticeable dip in the road surface. It's only since Affinity dug it up a few months ago that there's been an area of tarmac missing.
[quote][p][bold]E.Coli[/bold] wrote: this sink hole has been there since Affinity repaired a damaged water main December 2013 and is filled in with Polish beer cans and some rubble, there where 2 contractors there Friday armed with a bucket of gravel though.[/p][/quote]The surface has been sagging and cracking there across the whole road surface ever since I can remember... since sometime in 2012 there's been a noticeable dip in the road surface. It's only since Affinity dug it up a few months ago that there's been an area of tarmac missing. TRT
  • Score: 3

1:38pm Mon 10 Mar 14

Andrew1963 says...

There a couple of these sink holes in Oxhey avenue - One at the Junction with Heath road - it opens up every summer - they pour a bit of gravel in and cap it with tarmac - The other is in the pavement on the even number side at the junction with Watford Heath. Similar repair - i believe the sensible approach is for the County council to sell its shares in Tobacco firms and buy shares in the maintenance contractor. They will make a fortune in call outs tickling these problems, with no requirement to sort them out properly, the cash will roll in for years to come.
There a couple of these sink holes in Oxhey avenue - One at the Junction with Heath road - it opens up every summer - they pour a bit of gravel in and cap it with tarmac - The other is in the pavement on the even number side at the junction with Watford Heath. Similar repair - i believe the sensible approach is for the County council to sell its shares in Tobacco firms and buy shares in the maintenance contractor. They will make a fortune in call outs tickling these problems, with no requirement to sort them out properly, the cash will roll in for years to come. Andrew1963
  • Score: 3

1:44pm Mon 10 Mar 14

TRT says...

Andrew1963 wrote:
There a couple of these sink holes in Oxhey avenue - One at the Junction with Heath road - it opens up every summer - they pour a bit of gravel in and cap it with tarmac - The other is in the pavement on the even number side at the junction with Watford Heath. Similar repair - i believe the sensible approach is for the County council to sell its shares in Tobacco firms and buy shares in the maintenance contractor. They will make a fortune in call outs tickling these problems, with no requirement to sort them out properly, the cash will roll in for years to come.
Alternatively, if it is a massive sink hole... there's the landfill shortage problem sorted for a few years.

Actually, didn't Homer do that once?
[quote][p][bold]Andrew1963[/bold] wrote: There a couple of these sink holes in Oxhey avenue - One at the Junction with Heath road - it opens up every summer - they pour a bit of gravel in and cap it with tarmac - The other is in the pavement on the even number side at the junction with Watford Heath. Similar repair - i believe the sensible approach is for the County council to sell its shares in Tobacco firms and buy shares in the maintenance contractor. They will make a fortune in call outs tickling these problems, with no requirement to sort them out properly, the cash will roll in for years to come.[/p][/quote]Alternatively, if it is a massive sink hole... there's the landfill shortage problem sorted for a few years. Actually, didn't Homer do that once? TRT
  • Score: 5

4:45pm Mon 10 Mar 14

HornetJJ says...

Strange, as the road has been open all day with just the big pothole cordoned off!
Strange, as the road has been open all day with just the big pothole cordoned off! HornetJJ
  • Score: 4

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