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Jakarta Post

PVMBG says retaining walls needed

  • Arya Dipa

    The Jakarta Post

Bandung   /   Fri, December 21, 2018   /   07:07 am
PVMBG says retaining walls needed Weak at the knees: Land subsidence resulted in a sinkhole on Jl. Raya Gubeng in Surabaya, East Java, on Tuesday. The sinkhole, which was blamed on nearby construction projects, measures 20 meters deep and 30 m wide. (Antara/Didik Suhartono )

The Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation Center (PVMBG) has called on related stakeholders to immediately install retaining walls along the giant sinkhole that recently opened up on Jl. Raya Gubeng on Tuesday evening to prevent it from growing bigger.

“Installing retaining walls [can help] to prevent it from expanding,” I Gede Suantika of the PVMBG said in a statement on Wednesday. “[It is also better to prevent] pools of water from [forming or] entering the area.”

The giant sinkhole appeared in the middle of the busy road on Tuesday night, swallowing part of the four-lane Jl. Raya Gubeng and measuring roughly 30 meters wide and 15 m deep.

The police have cordoned off the area and arranged a traffic detour, while the Surabaya administration has promised that in 10 days the busy road will be open again to motorists after it has finished filling in the giant sinkhole.

No casualties were reported in the incident, but the cause remains unknown as the Surabaya administration’s building inspector is currently working with the National Police’s forensics lab and a team of geologists from the 10 November Institute of Technology (ITS) to investigate the cause of the hole.

National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) spokesperson Sutopo Purwo Nugroho has said the sinkhole was not a natural phenomenon, but he suspected that it was caused by a construction error or the lack of a retaining wall.

Some people also suspected that it was caused by the expansion project of Siloam Hospital, which is right next to the sinkhole. (ggq/ipa)