On June 3rd, Energy Transfer was required to shut down pumps at the Briar Road pipeline construction site in Meadowbrook Manor. There was too much turbidity in the groundwater leaving the site, in violation of Energy Transfer's DEP permit. Boring to install the pipes under the stream also stopped.
With the pumps shut down, groundwater entered the bore pit and path. In the early hours of June 4th, a sinkhole opened above the bore path. A tree in the sinkhole leaned into electrical and communication lines. Energy Transfer cleared the work area under the tree to allow for access and waited for Peco. Several hours later, as the ground in the sinkhole settled, the tree righted itself enough to come off of the electrical lines. While branches still were in the communication lines, it was safe to remove the tree, which workers did. Power was never turned off.
Staff from the PA Public Utility Commission (PUC) and PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) were on site in the morning. Workers excavated the sinkhole to probe for underground voids, as directed by the PUC, found none and filled the hole with fillable flow. Staff from Energy Transfer’s operations also confirmed that the nearby operating pipelines were not impacted by the sinkhole. Pipeline construction is on hold pending Energy Transfer's submission of a restart and contingency plan for DEP’s review and approval.