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Florida Sinkhole Home Razed, Another Hole Found

Last Thursday, 37-year-old Jeff Bush was swallowed whole by a sinkhole that appeared under his bed in his Tampa home.

The sinkhole was reportedly 30 feet wide and 60 feet deep, and, tragically, Bush has yet to even be found. The last anyone heard from Bush was when the other occupants of the home heard him screaming from his bedroom after a loud crashing noise, caused by the hole.

And now comes a report that a second sinkhole appeared a few miles away from where Bush was swallowed up.

Officials say the two sinkholes are not connected, but it's a pretty freaky coincidence that sinkholes are appearing left and right in Tampa.

"It is not geologically connected," Hillsborough County spokesman Willie Puz said.

Meanwhile, Bush's home was razed by a demolition crew.

Workers recovered family heirlooms, such as antique rifles, military medals, a family Bible, flag, teddy bears, and family photos.

As for recovery efforts to find Bush, those plans were scratched after it was determined that the odds of his survival were very grim.

"We just have not been able to locate Mr. Bush, and so for that reason, the rescue effort is being discontinued," Hillsborough County Administrator Mike Merrill said over the weekend. "At this point, it's really not possible to recover the body."

Bush's brother, Jeremy, frantically tried to rescue Jeff moments after he was sucked into the hole.

He tearfully told reporters that he doesn't think workers did enough to find his brother.

Recovery efforts were halted Saturday.

The two homes next to the Bush house have been evacuated as a precaution.

Although sinkholes aren't common enough to cause widespread panic, they do seem to be common in places like Florida. Sinkholes are formed when easily dissolved rocks such as limestone, carbonates, and salt beds become wet, leaving underground cavities beneath. When the roof of an underground cavity collapses, it opens a gaping hole in the ground above, bringing anything down with it.

You can visit the Florida Department of Environmental Protection if you think you might have a sinkhole in or around your home.

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Chris Joseph
Contact: Chris Joseph

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