A 36 year old man is presumed dead under the rubble of his home that is being swallowed up by a sinkhole in Tampa, Florida, MyFoxTampaBay.com reports. From the outside the house shows no visible damage, the front door is blocked off by yellow tape.
Here’s what you need to know…
1. Jeffrey Bush is the Man Missing Under the Rubble of His Home
The Tampa Bay Times reports that 911 emergency responders found Jeremy Bush attempting to rescue his brother, Jeffrey, 36, after their house became engulfed by a sinkhole. The house is located 240 Faithway Drive, in the Seffren neighborhood of Tampa, Florida. Jeffrey has not been seen since his brother was removed from the house by Hillsborough County Fire Rescue responders.
Jeremy says that he heard a loud noise followed by a cry for help from his brother at around 11 p.m. Thursday night.
2. The Sinkhole is Believed to be 30 Feet Across and 20 Feet Deep
WFLA reports that engineers estimate that the sinkhole reaches 50 feet across at the surface, and is around 100 feet deep. Beneath the surface the hole could stretch to another 100 feet across. The 2010 sinkhole in Tampa that swallowed a car was just 20 feet wide.
3. Six People Made it Out of the Home Safe
Jeffrey Bush’s aunt, Janell Wheeler, was also in the house when sinkhole began to swallow the home. She told The Tampa Times:
It sounded like a car hit my house
A crying Wheeler added:
…I just want my nephew
Wheeler says she was with four other adults, a child, and two family dogs when the incident occurred. The rest of the family went to stay in a hotel but Wheeler stayed behind all night waiting for updates.
The house was built in 1974 according to records.
4. Hillsborough County Officials Have Suspended the Search Due to Safety Concerns
This morning rescue officials brought more sophisticated equipment to help them determine the stability of the ground around the hole. Imaging technology will allow rescue workers to create a map of what the underground of the house currently looks like. Then officials will make a decision about whether or not they can continue searching for Jeff Bush. Jessica Damico, a Hillsborough County Fire Rescue spokesperson said:
Right now, the potential for a collapse is very, very high, there was no furniture. All he saw was a piece of the mattress sticking up, we put engineering equipment into the sinkhole and didn’t see anything compatible with life
5. Florida is Highly Susceptible to Sinkholes
Due to Florida’s natural make-up, sinkholes are a relatively common occurrence in the state. It would be possible for someone, theoretically, to swim from South Florida to Orlando thanks to the underground caverns of water beneath the surface. Over time the rock, particularly limestone, can erode, and this creates sinkholes.