A sinkhole that is five feet wide and 10 feet deep opened at the back of a house on Lisa Drive in West Whiteland Township on Sunday, January 20, 2019.
According to resident John Mattia, the sinkhole exposed a section of the Mariner East One Pipeline. This is the latest in a series of events that involved Mariner East. Last March, sinkholes were reported to have appeared in the same neighborhood, raising concerns about the construction work.
Last December, District Attorney Tom Hogan in Chester County facilitated a criminal investigation on the owners Energy Transfer LP and Sunoco Logistics Partners regarding the construction of three pipelines for natural gas liquids. These are believed to be the reason why there are sinkholes in the area as well as the water pollution in the southern part of the state. The pipelines are designed to transport propane, ethane, as well as butane from Western Pennsylvania to Marcus Hook in Delaware County.
In a statement released by Chester County officials, the sinkhole was due to the failure of a water drainage system related to the pipeline. According to the statement from Sunoco, the ME-1 pipeline was exposed but they have voluntarily closed it down as they work with the officials.
To find out more about nearby sinkholes in Chester County, check this Chester County sinkhole map.