WORK is under way to close up a hole which opened up beneath a major town centre road.
The hole, measuring two feet across, appeared in one lane of Yoden Way, Peterlee, after the torrential downpour last Thursday.
Many drivers drove over the gap in the surface before anyone realised it was more than just a pothole.
It is thought it was caused by the water from the lashing rain from the storm, with the area previously hit by subsidence caused by collieries.
This week workers began to dig up the surface, which opened up on the side of the road carrying traffic to the town centre.
Traffic between Peterlee and Horden, and the estates off Yoden Way, was being diverted along Nesbitt Road and Manor Way, with the section between the petrol stations and Fulwell Road sealed off.
Traffic lights to open up a lane to motorists are being considered.
Margaret Benton lives just yards away from where the hole appeared.
The 81-year-old, of Fulwell Road, said: “The woman up the road rang up to say ‘Has there been an accident up there?’
“I said no, and then my son, Colin, came down and said ‘there’s a hole in the road, mother’.
“He starts works at 4am at Rock Farm Dairy in Wheatley Hill, and he comes through here on the way and thought his car felt a bit funny in the road. Then saw later it had been a hole.
“Then it was all cordoned off.”
Durham County Council said the extent of the damage beneath the surface was unclear.
Repairs on the road should be completed by the end of today.