Skip to comments.Car, driver tumble into giant sinkhole amid rainstorm
Posted on 07/25/2010 8:20:16 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
This is the account of the man who rescued the driver of a Cadillac Escalade from a sinkhole shortly before 8 p.m. at N. Oakland and E. North Aves.:
Mark Pawlik, 46, was walking across the North Ave. bridge and talking to his friend on the phone when he noticed a traffic light had sunk into the ground.
Just the red, yellow and green lights were above street level. He told his friend he'd call him back. It was still pouring rain, but he wanted to stop and take a picture.
A moment later a man driving a black Escalade pulled up to the intersection at North and Oakland avenues, going east on North Ave.
"The Escalade just went wham!" Pawlik said. "Everything went down. The power line went like 'pow' and then I think it was sewer water was just pouring into the hole."
Pawlik leaned over the edge of the sinkhole, which was then about 15 feet by 15 feet.
"I said, 'Hey, man, are you OK, are you OK?' "
Pawlik said the man kept saying, "What happened? What just happened?"
The driver pulled himself onto the hood and then fell down into the hole. He pulled himself back up onto the hood, and Pawlik took his hand and then his belt loop to get him out of the hole. He said he was the only person in the car.
By that time, several people had gathered around the edge of the hole.
Pawlik could see that the ground had given way beneath the asphalt and yelled at people to get back.
Pawlik said he and several others tried to reach 911 but got busy signals, so a few people flagged down a city bus and asked the driver to call in the emergency.
Police arrived and put emergency tape up, and an ambulance took the driver of the Escalade away.
Pawlik, who owns a towing company, said the hole was about 20 feet deep.
At a 9:45 p.m. news conference, Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said crews were still on the scene with the Escalade, which was still running because it had been filled with gas just before the incident.
There is a prediction on the latest Cliff High webbot report summary
that a public building with many tons of granite will rapidly sink into a sinkhole . . . so fast that there won’t be many good quality videos of the beginning of it.
If you go to Youtube and search Shorewood Rapids, you should get the video. Jaw dropping. The language is a bit rough, but worth it to see the water streaming through that part of Shorewood. I can't even conceive that water level!
Listened to Charlie Syke's podcast yesterday of Friday's show. Stunning to hear all the stories.
We used to live on Green Bay Road, in Mequon. How did Mequon fare?
Yep... not sure I would have wanted to be walking around in that water, and debris from the sewer.
Take a look at the video from post # 2.
As far as I know, Mequon fared well. I live on top of a hill there (Bonniwell) so I just have a very soggy garden. There was some street flooding, but it was all cleared before I was out and about. Thiensville had a major (Fed financed) flood control project completed on Pigeoun Creek last year, so hopefully we did not have damage like we saw in the mid 90s.
We lived in the big house near the Fromm Dog Food sign, off of Green Bay Road. (13215 N. Green Bay Rd.) If you turned onto the road leading to the Fromm Dog Food plant, our house was the first one on the right. Meek Won Golf Course used to be all foxpens when I lived there. They built the golf course while we were there.
Glad to hear you survived! Charlie Sykes said Green Bay Road was interesting on Friday morning.
He's thanking his lucky stars that he was pulled out alive. Yet, miraculously, the driver of this SUV only suffered minor cuts and bruises when his vehicle plummeted 20ft into a sinkhole as he approached traffic lights.
Lance Treankler was driving his black Cadillac Escalade during torrential rains in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, yesterday, when the road opened up beneath him.
'The road just went out from under me,' Mr Treankler said. 'When I landed, my head snapped back. I went unconscious for a few seconds.
'When I looked up, I saw water run over me.' Mr Treankler was rescued by a passer-by, 46-year-old Mark Pawlik, who was walking along when he saw the vehicle disappear and a traffic light land on its roof.
Mr Pawlik said: 'The Escalade just went "wham". Everything went down.
'The power line went like "pow" and then I think it was sewer water was just pouring into the hole.'
The 20-foot-deep, 40-foot-wide sinkhole formed when a manhole collapsed, and will require several weeks to repair, a city spokesman said
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1297323/Miraculous-escape-driver-car-falls-20ft-sinkhole-traffic-lights-storm.html#ixzz0uhx43U2E
The local account did not have quotes from the driver of the car. Mr. Pawlik, the rescuer, should be nominated for a heros award. If he had not noticed the sinking traffic light, he might not have had his wits about him to rescue this man. THe rain was coming down so hard, it would have been difficult to have your eyes up and noticing where you were going.
The blue spruce remind me of our old house.
What a horrifying experience! And what a relief no one was hurt. What was the space under the roadway that it collapsed into? You can see the piers in the photo.
Are there other spots under Milwaukee’s roadways that have this construction? Better check them all out!
Nice looking neighborhood - looks like a real 1900s-1930s bungalow suburbs. I hope not too many of those homes were badly damaged.
They don’t seem like idiots, simply like good-natured young men with a video camera who have a paucity of descriptive language skills. More reading would help that.
Thank you for the compliment. Check your FReep Mail.
That’s the sewer down there, I think. Those “piers” are manholes probably leading to the “deep tunnel” which was a billion $$ project that was supposed to keep flooding like this from happening but is nowhere big enough.
Escalade= Overpriced Yukon
I cannot believe these Escalades sell at $75,000!
Thats more than a brand new Corvette.
Even more so than a Hummer H2, and I thought those were just blingmobiles but I looked into the pricing on these Escalades, truly a vehicle beyond my means.
Prayers for him and his family.
Incredible. Those dolts should not be walking around in such a current. Oh, well, young people think they are invincble.
You can have them a couple of years old for $40k. Brand new cars are the biggest rip offs. Clean used cars are the way to go. But NOT this one. Be extra careful about black Escalades! Make sure they were yon caught in a flood.
Any idea why the original estimates for water flows weren’t enough? Have there been an increasing number of “once-in-a-century” storms and downpours?
I know we are seeing that here on the East Coast with this heat wave. I wouldn’t call it a “wave,” though - it’s been this way since before the first day of Summer. God forbid it’s just the way Summer is going to be, from now on.
That is a question people have been asking for the last 20 years -- every time they release sewage into the Lake. THere has never been a satisfactory answer. One excuse is that some of the older communities have their storm sewers and their sanitary sewers merged. It will cost a fortune to retrofit a correction. The decision was made 20 years ago that it was too expensive, and thus we have this problem with every big rain.
This storm came on the heels of another big one 2 weeks ago. People had just finished cleaning up when they were hit again. 8 homes in one neighborhood saw their basements collapse. Three have already been razed, and 5 have been evacuated.
Good point about buying one a couple of years old, I may check that out. I may be needing something newer next year, but I swear if I buy an Escalade the first thing I will do is remove every piece of badging that refers to Cadillac and change it to a Yukon.
Better yet make it look like a project of someone trying to make a Yukon look like an Escalade, we have a couple of those around here.
And I love all things Cadillac, but I'd accept a Ford or a Chrysler product too.
In 2004 I bought a used 2002 Silverado 3500HD extended cab 4wd(actually because its a dually its a 6x6)with the now discontinued 8.1L Vortec (496CID) fully loaded with all the bells and whistles.
It had 31,000 miles on it, I paid $35,000 for it. A new one went for $52,000.
Best dang truck I have ever owned, no problems at all though it does drink gas up pretty good, but with diesel selling almost 30 cents more per gallon its not such a bad thing.
The engine was condemned to be such a fuel hog you can only get it in a two ton chassis now or in a boat, actually it was originally designed as a marine engine, rock solid engine and will be highly sought after in years from now for those wanting a high displacement big block hot rod motor.
So what are the citizens going to do now? It’s a shame that municipalities can’t engage in deficit spending themselves, as much as I hate it. This would be a perfect time to retrofit the whole system - it would be a buyer’s market in terms of cost, and actually get some money out there in construction jobs. Plus having a system that WORKS, in a city that is obviously preparing for a successful future, makes it immediately more appealing to businesses looking to move or expand. Too bad our Federal economy is in such a horrible deficit situation! What’s the state’s budget like?
Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if we’d taken just 10% of the money we’ve poured into Iraq and Afghanistan over the past 8 years and dumped it directly into infrastructure upgrade and maintenance. Would we have been the victims of terror attacks that would have done as much damage to America as our crumbling roads, bridges, water systems, and electrical grids have caused? Certainly the collapse of the Minneapolis I-35 Bridge alone would have been a greater catastrophe than any of these penny-ante losers who call themselves Islamic “terrorists” could have achieved.
But then I’m a real Conservative in that I believe in *conserving* the valuable things given to us from our forefathers, including all these buildings and structures built with ingenuity from the sweat of their brows. To let them disintegrate because you are too interested in present-day consumption is like letting your roof cave in because you had to buy a flat-panel TV instead of getting the leak patched.
Get the Escalade.
They are much more than an overpriced Yukon. My wife’s (ESV) has over 100,000 miles on it. It still looks, runs, rides and handles as nice as the day we bought it (used). They have to be the best tow vehicle made.
Plus, they are Cadillacs through & through . . .
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