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Sinkhole "eats" Corvettes at National Corvette Museum

A sad spot for Corvettes - Photo courtesy of Bob Bubnis

UPDATED: Sinkhole Corvette restorations to be overseen by General Motors-Announced at a press conference Thursday that was held at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green Kentucky is that General Motors has stepped up to oversee the restoration of the eight Corvettes that are still trapped in the sinkhole at the Museum.

Newly appointed Cprvette Assembly Plant Manager Jeff Lamarche.

On hand at the press conference and speaking for Chevrolet was Jeffery Lamarche newly appointed manager of the Corvette Assembly Plant which is located just a short distance from the Museum. Jeff stated that “ Chevrolet will oversee the restoration of the eight damaged vehicles”.  Several of the damaged Corvettes are one of a kind such as the one millionth Corvette and in speaking with Adam Boca the Museum’s Insurance agent, no firm damage value has been established yet.
Of particular note to Corvette enthusiasts is that the Museum is handling the sinkhole situation in their usual polished and positive manner. Wendell Strode, Museum Director and leader was quick to say “Safety First”, “We have a plan in place and we have a goal”.

Murphy discusses the recovery plan.

Also announced is that the Local firm of Scott & Murphy will handle putting the Sky dome back together. Structural Engineers were on hand Thursday. Geologists were taking air samples and the building itself had been inspected for safety. Murphy said “It’s been an unusual day”. Murphy went on to say that the plan is to first stabilize the area, bring in equipment in the next twenty four to  forty eight hours and start retrieving the damaged cars over the course of the next two to three weeks. He also stated that “We have a good plan and our goal is to have the Sky Dome back to the way it was by this coming August”.

New Corvettes waiting to be picked up.
Also of note is that the sinkhole situation in no way affects the development of the Motorsports Park or delivery of new Corvettes as several were on hand at the Museum awaiting to be picked up by their new owners.

***

Early Wednesday morning at 5:44 a.m. the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, KY received a call from their Security Company of an alert. The alert was triggered by the forming of a large and sudden sinkhole within the museum. The huge sinkhole is located in a building called the Skydome that is part of the museum but not connected to it.

 The gaping sinkhole inside the Skydome - photo courtesy of Bob Bubnis

 

 National Corvette Museum's Skydome where the sinkhole is located copy

The Skydome is an exhibit area. A total of eight Corvettes were damaged -  two on loan from General Motors and the other six belonging to the museum. The cars engulfed by the sinkhole include a 1993 ZR-1 Spyder, a 2009 white 1.5 Millionth Corvette, a 1992 white I Millionth Corvette, a 2009 “Blue Devil” Pace car, a 2001 Mallet Hammer Z06 Corvette, 1993, 40th Anniversary Corvette, and a 1963 Black Corvette. Fortunately, the only surviving 1983 Corvette was able to be moved before it fell into the sinkhole.
Structural Engineers are on hand to assess the damage. 

 

New Corvettes on display at the National Corvette Museum

 

Rear of the Skydome where the sinkhole is located

“As of 10 a.m. this morning the size of the hole has not changed,” said Katie Frassinelli, Marketing and Communications Manager.
The museum will celebrate its 20th Anniversary in August of 2014, followed closely by the grand opening of the Motorsports Park.
For more information contact the National Corvette Museum at 270-467-8846 or Bob Bubnis at 270-467-8805.

The Museum was closed to regular visitors

 

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Jim Baird, for Beech Tree News

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