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Man swallowed by sinkhole presumed dead

By Bonnie Ping,

Rescuers still have not entered the sinkhole that swallowed a Florida man on Thursday. The sinkhole continues to grow and is not safe for people to enter.

NBC reports that Jeffrey Bush, 36, was in bed when the earth opened up underneath him and swallowed him. The five other inhabitants of the house escaped in time.

"They heard a sound they described as a car crash emanating from the bedroom," Hillsborough County Fire Chief Ron Rogers said. "They rushed in. All they could see was part of a mattress sticking out of the hole. Essentially, the floor of the room had opened."

Crews have placed equipment in the hole, listening for signs that Jeffrey might still be alive, but so far they have heard nothing. The house will be knocked down before the search for his body begins.

Houses surrounding the home have been evacuated.

ABC reports the hole is 30 ft. wide and about 20 ft. deep and is expected to grow.

Sinkholes are common in Florida.

"Florida sits on a system of caverns filled with water," Rogers said. "As that water moves up and down, it erodes those caverns, and from time to time they collapse."

 
 

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