GEORGETOWN, SC (WCSC) - The sinkhole problem is growing in Georgetown and it is causing more damage than large holes in the ground. Businesses are having to close because their buildings are unsafe. New holes are forming, but the cause has yet to be determined.
Landy's Dry Cleaners is one of several businesses closing up shop because its building is unsafe. Local business owners say it is upsetting to see businesses disappear.
"I can't describe it," said business owner Rod Stalvey. "I can't describe. It's a terrible thing, it really is. I love Georgetown. I wouldn't be here if I didn't and I certainly want to see this town grow."
Stalvey owns several businesses in Georgetown. Hhe points his finger at the drainage project and city council for the cause of the sinkholes.
"The city council and the mayor's lack of due diligence in this project," he said. "They essentially showed up with shovels and started digging and now we're suffering repercussions."
Georgetown Mayor Jack Scoville says if the cause of the sinkholes is the drainage project, the blame shouldn't be placed on the city because they only funded the project.
"The actual agency that picked the engineers and decided the scope of the project was the Department of Transportation," Scoville said. "We feel that they're responsible if indeed the project was the cause."
Scoville added that over 20 engineers have been in town for several weeks running tests trying to determine the cause. He says now all they can do is wait.
"Everybody wishes it hadn't happened," Scoville said. "Now we're going to work together and figure out the cause of this and fix it."
So far the sinkholes have affected several businesses, parking lots, the judicial center and the library.
All the known sinkholes are in the same area as the drainage project.