A century old disused mine shaft, which caused a massive sinkhole in the backyard of an elderly Ipswich couple, is expected to be back-filled on Thursday.
Queensland Mines Minister Anthony Lynham says water has been pumped from the hole and he’s hopeful repair work will start as soon as possible.
‘An earthmoving contractor is on standby and hopefully in-ground assessments can begin in the morning once the hole is dry,’ he said.
‘Our abandoned mine specialists are very experienced at dealing with mine subsidence and normally earthmoving equipment is used to remove debris from the hole before it is back-filled.’
Home owners Lynn and Reg McKay have spent the past two nights at a motel after their backyard started to get gobbled up by the mine shaft.
The couple, who were also victims of the 2011 floods, should be back in their Basin Pocket home on Thursday night, says Mr Lynham.
The hole had expanded from about eight to 10 metres in diameter on Tuesday to about 13 metres on Wednesday.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said inspectors from the Mines Department were on site on Wednesday.
It is understood the mine was about 40 metres from where it had been originally marked on the council’s town planning maps.