Car hits hydrant, sinks into hole

Becky Vargo • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:44 AM

Water flooded the area and the car sunk into a hole.

“It was quite a mess for a while there,” Ferrysburg Fire Chief Mike Olthof said.

Ferrysburg firefighters closed off the area once the flooding started.

“A third-shift worker was coming home from work, went over the curb and right on top of the hydrant,” Olthof said. “He thought maybe he broke a tie rod (on his car).”

Olthof said the man was wet, but not injured. He was standing outside the car when emergency personnel arrived.

Travis McNees, 20, was driving a 1997 Ford Mustang around a curve in the area of Parkwood Drive and Park Place Circle in Ferrysburg when the car went off the road about 6:30 a.m., police said.

“The impact with the fire hydrant snapped the water line, causing extensive flooding,” police said.

Olthof said the water from the 12-inch main flooded the storm drain and a nearby collection pond.

“There was probably 2 feet of water in the dip (in the road),” Olthoff said. “I was afraid we were going to get water in some basements.”

Olthof said the car was sitting level when police arrived on the scene, but it sank into the hole within minutes.

The crash took out part of the sidewalk and affected some gas lines, Olthof said.

Firefighters were on the scene until 9:30 a.m. Repairs were made and water was restored to the area by about noon Saturday.

Olthof said fire hydrants are designed to snap off if they are struck by a vehicle. The hydrant that was hit by the Mustang was installed new when the road was redone last year.

Police said the car's tie rod was not broken. They said speed and poor tire treads were factors in the crash.

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