A 36-year-old Tampa man is presumed dead after a sinkhole suddenly opened up beneath his family’s home late last night. The man’s family described a sound similar to a car crash and were horrified to find the man’s entire room had sank into the earth.
Rescue crews were able to save the man’s brother, who was also trapped in the sinkhole after he attempted to save the man.
“When he got there, there was no bedroom left,” Hillsborough County Fire Rescue spokeswoman Jessica Damico said of the brother. “There was no furniture. All he saw was a piece of the mattress sticking up.”
The fire and rescue crew estimate the hole was 30 feet across when they arrived, but could be as large as 100 feet and growing beneath the house. They have abandoned the house as a safety precaution.
“We put engineering equipment into the sinkhole and didn’t see anything compatible with life,” Damico said.
Authorities have evacuated surrounding homes in the neighborhood, fearing the sinkhole may spread.