Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

I-4 at Plant City repaired and open again after sinkhole scare

PLANT CITY — After four days — and countless hours of frustration for those sitting in traffic — drivers were able to use all four lanes on eastbound Interstate 4 when construction wrapped at 6 p.m. Friday.

The Florida Department of Transportation closed three of the four lanes Tuesday near the Branch Forbes exit after drivers reported a dip in the left lane.

Engineers began investigating the depression, caused by soil settling beneath the asphalt, to determine whether it was a sinkhole.

Crews used ground-penetrating radar to study the depression and drilled holes to retrieve core samples. They pumped 1,000 cubic yards of concrete beneath the surface to stabilize the roadway, said Marian Scorza, a spokeswoman for the department.

But while they waited for it to settle, a sinkhole opened on the main detour road, U.S. 92, at Alexander Street, causing further delays and headaches.

Scorza said both problems have been repaired and all lanes are open.

Southwest Florida Water Management District officials said they believe the plague of sinkholes in the Plant City area resulted from farmers' pumping of water to protect their crops during an unusual two-week cold snap.

Robbyn Mitchell can be reached at (813) 226-3373 or

I-4 at Plant City repaired and open again after sinkhole scare 01/15/10 [Last modified: Friday, January 15, 2010 9:16pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Investigators reviewing HHS chief's private charter flights


    WASHINGTON — Federal investigators are examining Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price's recent use of costly charter flights on the taxpayers' dime for official business.

  2. FSU gives president John Thrasher a pay bump as its academic standing rises


    TALLAHASSEE — With Florida State University moving closer to becoming a top-25 public university, the school's trustees on Friday bumped up President John Thrasher's salary by 7 percent and awarded him a $200,000 bonus.

    Florida State University President John Thrasher, center, is surrounded by lawmakers in 2016 as he visits the Florida Senate. Thrasher on Friday received a pay increase to go with the university's increased academic standing, including in the latest U.S. News & World Report ranking of public universities. FSU ranks 33rd this year, and is aiming for a top-25 spot. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]

  3. Pasco driver, 66, dies in Friday crash on SR 54


    NEW PORT RICHEY — A 66-year-old man died Friday after he collided with oncoming traffic on State Road 54 in Pasco County, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

  4. Florida reverses decision to shield information from nursing home inspection reports


    TALLAHASSEE — Florida regulators decided Friday they will abandon the use of software that allowed them to heavily redact key words from nursing home inspection reports posted online, choosing instead to link to the more complete reports available on a federal site.

    Officials for the state Agency for Health Care Administration said Friday they will no longer use software that allowed them to heavily redact key words from nursing home inspection reports posted online. The agency has been under increased scrutiny since Sept. 13, when eight residents of The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills, pictured here, died after power was lost to an air-conditioning system during Hurricane Irma. Two more residents died this week. [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
  5. Trump's travel ban to be replaced by restrictions tailored to certain countries


    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's ban on travelers from six majority-Muslim countries is set to be replaced as soon as this weekend with more targeted restrictions on visits to the United States that would vary by country, officials familiar with the plans told the New York Times on Friday.