DISASTERS

Most residents evacuated by sinkhole could return in a week

  • On her first day in office, Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice Miller and county executive Mark Hackel, right, speak to reporters at the site of a sinkhole in suburban Detroit on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017. Residents in 22 homes have been evacuated since Dec. 24. (AP Photo/Ed White)

    On her first day in office, Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice Miller and county executive Mark Hackel, right, speak to reporters at the site of a sinkhole in suburban Detroit on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017. Residents in 22 homes have been evacuated since Dec. 24. (AP Photo/Ed White)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016 photo, bricks are falling off the exterior wall of a house sitting over a sinkhole, in Fraser, Mich. The major sinkhole disrupted the holiday season in Fraser, a Detroit suburb of roughly 14,500 people about 15 miles north of downtown and five miles west of the Great Lakes waterway of Lake St. Clair. Roads have been closed and about two dozen homes evacuated after the underground sewer collapse on Christmas Eve. Nobody has been injured but inconveniences are many as crews begin a months-long process of assessing the damage, making repairs and determining the cause.   (Todd McInturf/Detroit News via AP)

    In this Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016 photo, bricks are falling off the exterior wall of a house sitting over a sinkhole, in Fraser, Mich. The major sinkhole disrupted the holiday season in Fraser, a Detroit suburb of roughly 14,500 people about 15 miles north of downtown and five miles west of the Great Lakes waterway of Lake St. Clair. Roads have been closed and about two dozen homes evacuated after the underground sewer collapse on Christmas Eve. Nobody has been injured but inconveniences are many as crews begin a months-long process of assessing the damage, making repairs and determining the cause. (Todd McInturf/Detroit News via AP)  (The Associated Press)

The new public works commissioner in a suburban Detroit county is declaring "all hands on deck" to fix a broken sewer line that has created a major sinkhole and forced the evacuation of 22 homes.

Former U.S. Rep. Candice Miller used her first day in office Sunday to urge Macomb County residents to reduce water consumption while crews create a bypass to get around the bad pipe. The short-term fix could take a month.

During a news conference at the sinkhole site in Fraser, Miller said she doesn't have all the answers but promised "transparency."

The sinkhole was discovered Dec. 24, just weeks after Miller was elected to lead the county's public works department. Three homes likely are beyond repair, though residents in 19 homes could return in a week.