Florida Sinkhole Rude Awakening For Sleeping Man As Chasm Swallows House [VIDEO]

By iScienceTimes Staff on March 1, 2013 10:02 AM EST

Guatemala City Sinkhole
Sinkholes, like this one in Guatemala City, usually appear after heavy rains and can grow rapidly in a matter of days. (Photo: YouTube)

A Florida sinkhole swallowed a sleeping man late Thursday evening after it suddenly opened up beneath his bedroom. Jeffrey Bush disappeared into the Florida sinkhole and his brother, Jeremy, told first responders that he heard a loud crash, and then a scream, but when he got to his brother's room everything inside had been swallowed by the Florida sinkhole.

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"When he got there, there was no bedroom left," Hillsborough County Fire Rescue spokeswoman Jessica Damico told reporters. "There was no furniture. All he saw was a piece of the mattress sticking up."

Bush called 911 and tried to locate his brother inside the Florida sinkhole. When authorities arrived they forced Bush to abandon the house as it collapsed further into the expanding sinkhole. The Florida sinkhole is 30 feet wide across the surface, but authorities say it measures about 100 feet across below ground. Jeffrey Bush is missing, but authorities have not yet declared him dead as more monitoring of the Florida sinkhole is required.

"We put engineering equipment into the sinkhole and didn't see anything compatible with life," Damico said. "The entire house is on the sinkhole."

The Bush brothers shared the house with their aunt, Janell Wheeler, who told the Tampa Bay Times that she, too, was startled when the Florida sinkhole opened up.

"It sounded like a car hit my house," she said.

Family members in the house were evacuated to a nearby hotel, although Wheeler chose to sleep nearby in her car. Wheeler and Bush are both distraught over the sudden disappearance of Jeffrey, as well as the news that their house is condemned and they are now without a place to live. However, the material comforts lost in house are a distant thought for the family as their immediate concerns and worries are focused on Jeffrey's well-being.

"I just want my brother back," Bush told the Tampa Bay Times. "That's all I want."

Local news reports captured the devastation caused by the Florida sinkhole on camera.

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