Sinkhole opens up on Newport, NSW road after water pipe bursts

A pipe that burst in an affluent Sydney suburb sent a spurt of water several metres up in the sky and caused a sinkhole to open up.

First responders were called to Newport in Sydney’s northern beaches area at 10.13am on Tuesday and found a fountain of water gushing from the ground.

Nobody was injured, and no buildings appeared to have been damaged, a Fire and Rescue NSW spokesman said.

But the water flow caused a sinkhole to open up in the street, which will be repaired once Sydney Water has fixed the pipe, according to the spokesman.

“The water has now been turned off, and Sydney Water is working to do repairs,” he said.

Firefighters released aerial footage of the outburst on Attunga Road near the corner of Barrenjoey Road. The video shows a small crowd of bystanders watching the water flow.

“Great footage,” one person commented on the fireys’ Facebook page.

“Amazing water pressure!” wrote another person on Twitter.

It was unclear what caused the pipe to burst.

A Northern Beaches Council spokesman said emergency repairs undertaken by Sydney Water will make the road usable while the council works to complete restoration.

A Sydney Water spokesman said about 100 properties will have their water supply impacted while the pipe is being repaired.

The utility said a customer advocate would be on site to help residents.

“Sydney Water apologies for the impact to customers and motorists,” the spokesman said.

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Newport boss warns Brighton over “awful” FA Cup pitch 24 hours after rugby match

Newport boss Mike Flynn has warned Premier League Brighton to prepare for an “awful” pitch tonight.

The County chief even revealed he has banned his League Two players from back-passes as it is so uneven.

Newport’s Rodney Parade ground hosted a rugby match on Saturday night when Dragons lost to Ospreys in a Guinness PRO14 Welsh derby clash.

It was just over 24 hours before Newport’s televised FA Cup third round tie with Graham Potter’s Seagulls.

The hosts have got a heated dome on the pitch to protect it from the frost but Flynn still admits the visitors will be in for a rude awakening.

Flynn,40, said: “It will be bobbly especially because of the game on Saturday.

Brighton’s Ben White thrived on loan at Newport in the past and returns today

“It could be awful – it depends how cut up the pitch gets.

“But the groundstaff have worked exceptionally hard and will try and have it flat.

“But any back-pass to the goalkeeper – keep it out of the width of our goal.

“Brighton’s pitch is not bad so I hope this is an eye-opener to them.

“I hope they walk through the gates of Rodney Parade and think they can’t wait to get out.

“We have to use things to our advantage.”

Newport are riding high in second in League Two after a very promising start to the season.

They also boast an impressive pedigree in the FA Cup after previously knocking out Leicester and Middlesbrough in 2019 and Leeds in 2018 at home before losing away at Spurs in a replay.

Newport nearly knocked out Spurs under Mauricio Pochettino previously

Flynn, in charge since 2017, admits the financial boost from those heroics has helped keep the Welsh club alive.

“I think we would be struggling to still be here if it wasn’t for the FA Cup,” he said.

“It has kept the club going, it is as simple as that.

“We were heavily in debt, close to £700,000, and it wasn’t until the following season when we have played Tottenham and Leeds that we were able to clear those debts.

“Since then we have been able to put money in the bank and build on it.

“It is something I will always be proud of.

“The FA Cup has been our saving grace and is part of the reason why it is the best competition in the world.

“I loved watching it growing up and will continue watching until the day I pop my clogs.”

Sunday’s game sees the return of Brighton’s highly-rated star Ben White,23, who caught the eye on loan at County in 2017/18 when he played 51 games.

Flynn said: “He is the best loan the club have ever had.

“He will go on to play for England.

“He is an exceptional lad and I look forward to seeing him if he comes down.

“When you have a young professional with the attitude and ability he has, then sky is the limit.”

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Coronavirus: Newport and Merthyr Tydfil ‘under close watch’

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The lockdown across Rhondda Cynon Taf will be reviewed by the Welsh Government in two weeks’ time

Two more areas have been put under “close watch” as coronavirus cases in Wales rise.

Infection rates have risen from 20 per 100,000 people to 35 per 100,000 in the past week, First Minister Mark Drakeford said.

He also said the “developing situation” in Newport and Merthyr Tydfil was being kept under “close watch”.

Currently, restrictions are in place for people living in Caerphilly county and Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT).

In terms of cases in the UK, Caerphilly is 6th, RCT is 13th, Newport is 35th and Merthyr Tydfil 36th.

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Pontypridd is one of the main towns in Rhondda Cynon Taf where restrictions have been brought in

Strict new rules came into force on Thursday evening for RCT residents after a spike in Covid-19 cases there.

Its 240,000 residents are not be able to enter or leave the county without a reasonable excuse.

Health officials say hospital admissions will increase further if people ignore the latest restrictions.

The local authority became the second council area to enter a local lockdown in Wales, following Caerphilly last week.

“It’s a very rapidly changing picture,” said Dr Kelechi Nnoaham, director of public health at Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board, which covers Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT), Merthyr Tydfil and Bridgend.

“At this time last week, we really didn’t have any significant cases in the hospital, but that’s changed.”

He said they were now dealing with a “handful” of cases.

“We always knew that once community transmission got sustained, we will begin to pick up cases in the hospital,” he told BBC Radio Wales’ Breakfast programme.

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A mobile testing site set up in Abercynon witnessed long queues on Thursday

“So it’s exactly what we expected. It’s probably going to increase in the hospital now if we do not to take additional measures, but we are doing so at this point.”

Health officials said the initial wave of infections appears to have been in younger people.

“But it’s only a matter of time before it seeps into the older population, who are more likely to be vulnerable, who are more likely to become ill if they do get it, and therefore end up in hospital,” added Dr Nnoaham.

Public Health Wales warned on Thursday that “there may be more deaths in the coming days” with both RCT and Caerphilly county in local lockdowns.

Figures released on Thursday revealed more than half of all Covid-19 hospital admissions in Wales were in the Aneurin Bevan health board area, which covers Caerphilly and Newport, and Cwm Taf Morgannwg.

Wales’ Health Minister Vaughan Gething said there had been a “rapid” rise in cases in RCT, with 82.1 infections per 100,000 people over the past seven days.

The latest equivalent figure across Wales was 21.4 per 100,000.

Wednesday’s rate of positive tests for the past week in RCT was 5.1% – the highest in Wales. Mr Gething previously warned a positive rate of 4% across Wales would trigger a national lockdown.

The Wales average is 2.4%.

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