Massive sinkhole in Fraser, Michigan, prompts evacuations, state of emergency

A massive sinkhole in Michigan is threatening homes and forcing officials to pump sewage into a nearby river as they race to prevent the sludge from filling residents' basements.

The 250-foot-long, 100-foot-wide sinkhole erupted in Fraser, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, on Christmas Eve morning. Authorities believe it formed after an 11-foot-wide sewer pipe burst 55 feet below ground.

Fraser Mayor Joe Nichols declared a state of emergency on Saturday and ordered 22 homes, all on one street, to be evacuated. There have been no deaths or injuries, but three homes have been deemed uninhabitable because of damage from the sinkhole.

RELATED: Huge Japanese sinkhole spans five lanes of traffic

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Huge Japanese sinkhole spans five lanes of traffic
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Huge Japanese sinkhole spans five lanes of traffic
A huge sinkhole is seen at an intersection near Hakata station in Fukuoka, Japan, November 8, 2016 in this photo taken by Kyodo. Mandatory credit Kyodo/via REUTERS 
A huge sinkhole is seen at an intersection near Hakata station in Fukuoka, Japan, November 8, 2016 in this photo taken by Kyodo. Mandatory credit Kyodo/via REUTERS
A huge sinkhole is seen at an intersection near Hakata station in Fukuoka, Japan, November 8, 2016 in this photo taken by Kyodo. Mandatory credit Kyodo/via REUTERS 
This combo shows a photo of a giant sinkhole (R), measuring around 30 metres (98 feet) wide and 15 metres deep, which appeared in a five-lane street in the middle of the Japanese city of Fukuoka on November 8, 2016 and another photo (L) of the same section of road after repairs were made on November 15. The Japanese city on November 15 reopened the busy street that collapsed into a giant sinkhole, with efforts of crews who worked round the clock for a week drawing raves on social media. / AFP / JIJI PRESS / JIJI PRESS / Japan OUT (Photo credit should read JIJI PRESS/AFP/Getty Images)
This combo shows a photo of a giant sinkhole (L) measuring around 30 metres (98 feet) wide and 15 metres deep, which appeared in a five-lane street in the middle of the Japanese city of Fukuoka on November 8, 2016 and another photo (R) of the same section of road after repairs were made on November 15. The Japanese city on November 15 reopened the busy street that collapsed into a giant sinkhole, with efforts of crews who worked round the clock for a week drawing raves on social media. / AFP / JIJI PRESS / JIJI PRESS / Japan OUT (Photo credit should read JIJI PRESS/AFP/Getty Images)
Personnel are seen by a giant sinkhole as they work to fill the hole that appeared in the middle of Fukuoka's bustling business district, swallowing part of a five-lane street, on November 9, 2016. Workers dumped huge amounts of wet cement and sand into the gaping hole, measuring around 30 metres (98 feet) wide and 15 metres deep, that had exposed support columns of nearby buildings at a traffic intersection. / AFP / JIJI PRESS / STR / Japan OUT (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)
Personnel are seen by a giant sinkhole as they work to fill the hole that appeared in the middle of Fukuoka's bustling business district, swallowing part of a five-lane street, on November 9, 2016. Workers dumped huge amounts of wet cement and sand into the gaping hole, measuring around 30 metres (98 feet) wide and 15 metres deep, that had exposed support columns of nearby buildings at a traffic intersection. / AFP / JIJI PRESS / STR / Japan OUT (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)
A giant sinkhole is seen in a five-lane urban boulevard, exposing support columns of nearby buildings at a traffic intersection in Fukuoka, southwestern Japan, on November 8, 2016. A giant sinkhole, measuring around 20 metres (66 feet) by 15, appeared in the middle of a busy Japanese city on November 8, swallowing part of a five-lane street near the main railway station. / AFP / JIJI PRESS / JIJI PRESS / Japan OUT (Photo credit should read JIJI PRESS/AFP/Getty Images)
This photo shows a giant sinkhole (C) in a five-lane urban boulevard, eroding soil and exposing underground steel columns supporting commercial buildings in Fukuoka, southwestern Japan, on November 8, 2016. No injuries were reported as the accident occurred in the early morning hours. / AFP / JIJI PRESS / STR / Japan OUT (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)
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"One is halfway down [the sinkhole] and the other two are leaning that direction," Bob Cannon, supervisor of neighboring Clinton Township, told NBC News.

Power and gas have been shut off in the area as engineers redirect sewage into the Clinton River after rainfall threatened to send it cascading into basements. The river isn't connected to any sources of drinking water for the area, and will "correct itself over a number of months" and filter out the sewage, Cannon said.

"It's a bad choice, but a better choice than having it go into our basements," he said.

The hole is still growing and authorities say the ground won't be safe enough for residents to return for at least two weeks. Gas and water have been shut off as engineers work to steady the sinkhole and start filling it back in.

This isn't the first time a sinkhole has struck the area: The same road caved in in 2004. That collapse took more than $50 million and 10 months to fix, according to The Detroit News.

"My heart goes out to you," Nichols, the mayor, told residents at a packed City Hall meeting on Monday, The Detroit News reported. "I know that people here are very upset and understandably so. We are upset for you. We are looking for answers. If we stay strong, we will get through this ... and we will get home."

RELATED: Dead Sea Sinkholes

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Dead Sea Sinkholes
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Dead Sea Sinkholes
A picture taken on February 8, 2014 near Ein Gedi, in Israel shows the Dead Sea shoreline shaped by the decline in water levels with a sinkhole (L) formed as a result of the drying up. The Dead Sea, 400 meters below sea level, is the lowest point on earth and its mineral-rich waters and shores have been celebrated for their cleansing, healing and therapeutic properties. AFP PHOTO THOMAS COEX (Photo credit should read THOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view photo shows sinkholes created by the drying of the Dead Sea, near Kibbutz Ein Gedi, on November 10, 2011. The Dead Sea is one of the sites candidate of other 28 sits in a international online campaign votes to select the new Seven Wonders of World Heritage Sites. AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view photo shows sinkholes created by the drying of the Dead Sea, near Kibbutz Ein Gedi, on November 10, 2011. The Dead Sea is one of the sites candidate of other 28 sits in a international online campaign votes to select the new Seven Wonders of World Heritage Sites. AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view photo shows sinkholes created by the drying of the Dead Sea, near Kibbutz Ein Gedi, on November 10, 2011. The Dead Sea is one of the sites candidate of other 28 sits in a international online campaign votes to select the new Seven Wonders of World Heritage Sites. AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view photo shows sinkholes created by the drying of the Dead Sea, near Kibbutz Ein Gedi, on November 10, 2011. The Dead Sea is one of the sites candidate of other 28 sits in a international online campaign votes to select the new Seven Wonders of World Heritage Sites. AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view photo shows sinkholes created by the drying of the Dead Sea, near Kibbutz Ein Gedi, on November 10, 2011. The Dead Sea is one of the sites candidate of other 28 sits in a international online campaign votes to select the new Seven Wonders of World Heritage Sites. AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
An aerial view photo shows sinkholes created by the drying of the Dead Sea, near Kibbutz Ein Gedi, on November 10, 2011. The Dead Sea is one of the sites candidate of other 28 sits in a international online campaign votes to select the new Seven Wonders of World Heritage Sites. AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA (Photo credit should read MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)
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The sinkhole runs along 15 Mile Road, which divides the two communities of Fraser and Clinton Township. It's expected to shut down 15 Mile for several months — a problem for an area that's home to more than 100,000 people.

Engineers with civil engineering firm Anderson, Eckstein and Westrick are working to secure the area. The firm did not return a call from NBC News on Tuesday but told The Detroit Free Press it was considering building a temporary roadway while 15 Mile is compromised.

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