Hole opens up on Bearss Ave. as pothole problems continue

Russell Fadil has an ear for car problems. With each thump coming from across Bearss Avenue Monday evening, the mechanic knew something was wrong.

"I looked outside and was actually able to see a depression in the road and it got bigger over time," Fadil said Tuesday.

Crews eventually had to shut down westbound Bearss Avenue to fix the six-foot deep depression.

It's a problem plaguing roadways following last week's historic rainfall and Mayor Bob Buckhorn says it's not going away.

"We had well over 470 pot holes that we have already fixed. But in the coming weeks, as the water recedes and the ground gets less saturated we're going to see more of that. You're fighting Mother Nature and you'll never win," he explained.

The potholes aren't the city's worst worry. They've identified over 115 wastewater cave-ins, collapsing portions of streets. Crews are prioritizing calls and working their way out from major thoroughfares to smaller streets.

"We normally have two crews out fixing potholes. Normally, we'd get it done when you call within 72 hours. We now have six crews out there doing potholes. We will probably hire additional private contractors to help us," Buckhorn told FOX 13.

In the meantime, the city's asking you to pack your patience while they deal with the ever-evolving issue.

"Folks need to recognize, we have a limited amount of manpower here. We're doing the best we can the fastest we can possibly do it," Buckhorn said.

At this point, Mayor Buckhorn couldn't put a number on the amount of money it'll cost to fix the roads. If you have a depression or cave-in in your neighborhood, you're asked to call the City of Tampa Utilities Call Line at 813-274-8811.