Back end of Port Authority of Allegheny County bus falls into sinkhole

Oct. 29, 2019
The bus was lifted out via cranes and the cause of the sink hole remains under investigation.

Downtown Pittsburgh, Pa., city dwellers witnessed a jarring site Monday when a sink hole appeared on a street causing the back end of a bus to dip inside and the front end of a car to tilt toward the hole.

The Port Authority of Allegheny County bus was stopped at a red light at the corner of Penn Ave. and 10th when the hole opened. The back of the bus and a smaller blue Kia were the only vehicles affected by the sink hole. The bus was reported to have a single passenger and the operator on-board; the female passenger was treated for minor injuries and released.

The collapse of the road caused a water main break that impacted small parts of the downtown area. Two cranes were erected and removed the 14-ton bus from the hole just before 10:00 p.m. Monday night. The car, a blue Kia Optima, was removed within hours of the incident.

According to Pittsburgh Public Safety Director Wendell Hissrich, the bus was sitting on power lines including two 22,000-volt lines, and damage to those lines, as well as fiber-optic cable, will be assessed after removal. The Pittsburgh Public Safety Department expects 10th between Liberty and Penn to remain closed for six to 10 weeks while repairs are made.

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Editor in Chief

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the magazine’s editorial direction and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.