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City of Red Bluff tackles water repair, leading to the discovery of a 22 ft. sinkhole

Large sinkhole found in Red Bluff on Rio St.

In Tehama County, the City of Red Bluff had two water issues on their hands over the weekend. One, a broken water main that has since been repaired. The second, blockage from Friday's storm runoff that clogged the main drainage on Rio St.

The drainage running from the Red Bluff bus terminal across Rio St. to the Sacramento River became clogged Friday morning. Public works crews have been alternating to keep personnel on site, at one point using the Red Bluff Fire Department as a safety standby.

On Monday, excavation efforts began in an attempt to repair the blockage on Rio and Walnut Streets. That's when crews discovered a 22 ft. wide and 11 ft. deep sinkhole at the edge of Rio St.

"This didn't happen just overnight. With the amount of erosion and soil that's left the sight, it's happened over time. This has actually been building and building for a while so there's no real way of knowing how long this sinkhole has actually been like this."

A potentially dangerous situation Red Bluff's Associate Civil Engineer, Scott Miller, said was luckily discovered.

"The only thing that's holding everything up is the asphalt. If somebody were to drive over this the asphalt could have given way and actually fell into this hole," Miller elaborated.

That section of Rio and Walnut Streets will be blocked off for at least two days as crews work on filling the sinkhole. Miller advises drivers to stay clear of the area.


Meanwhile, across town some homeowners had little to no water pressure Saturday morning. As they were waking up to a large amount of water in their backyards, Miller said he was in the air with PJ Helicopters to locate the source of the issue.

The problem was found to be an 18 inch water main break, located near the Red Bluff High School soccer fields.

Officials are still investigation why the 6 ft. section broke. Water pressure was restored hours later that same day.

Red Bluff City Manager Rick Crabtree noted the city has extra personnel on duty before Tuesday's expected weather system.


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