A large sinkhole has opened under the George Washington Memorial Parkway near the Dead Run creek and between the Beltway and Chain Bridge Road in Fairfax County, leading it to be closed 'indefinitely.'
The sinkhole, which measures 'several feet deep' opened up off the shoulder near the northbound lanes. Initially, just the northbound lanes were closed but the southbound lanes were closed shortly after.
The Federal Highway Administration has engineers currently inspecting the sinkhole and have warned drivers that the road could be closed for an extended period of time until the Parkway can be deemed safe for vehicles.
Over two inches of rain fell in the DC area on Thursday and could have played a role in the formation of the sinkhole.
Jenny Anzelmo-Sarles, a spokeswoman for the National Park Service says the sinkhole "appears to be caused by a broken storm water pipe deep below ground." She added, "engineers have determine [sic] the sinkhole does not pose immediate risk to [southbound] lanes. [Northbound] closure likely to be extensive."
The southbound lanes were reopened around 10:30am on Friday, but the northbound lanes will need to be closed throughout the weekend, if not longer while the NPS conducts excavation work to determine what needs to be done to be able to fully reopen the Parkway.