Florida man missing, presumed dead after sinkhole opens under bedroom

Posted at 10:56 AM, Mar 01, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-01 07:40:45-05

SEFFNER, Fla. (AP) - A Florida man is missing and feared dead after a huge sinkhole opened up under his bedroom and swallowed him as he screamed for help.

Officials lowered equipment into the sinkhole but didn't see any sign of life. Jeremy Bush says it took him only seconds to get to his brother's room in the home near Tampa about 11 o'clock last night. He says he jumped into the hole, and was quickly up to his neck in dirt as he tried to save his brother, Jeff.

Engineers worked to determine the size of the sinkhole. At the surface, officials estimated it was about 30 feet across. Below the surface, officials believed it was 100 feet across.

From the outside of the small, sky blue house, nothing appears wrong. There are no cracks.

SEFFNER, Fla. (AP) - A Florida man says he tried to rescue his brother when a sinkhole opened up inside their house near Tampa.

Jeremy Bush says he heard his brother screaming for help when the earth collapsed beneath his brother's bedroom.

Jeremy Bush says it took him seconds to get to his brother Jeff's room late Thursday, but the earth had already swallowed him.

Bush says he jumped into the hole and was quickly covered in dirt. An arriving Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputy pulled him to safety.

Jeremy Bush fears his brother is dead. Fire rescue officials lowered equipment into the sinkhole but have so far not seen any sign of life.

SEFFNER, Fla. (AP) - A man is missing after a large sinkhole opened under the bedroom of a house near Tampa, and his brother says the man screamed for help as the collapse happened.

The 36-year-old man's brother told rescue crews he heard a loud crash around 11 p.m. Thursday, then heard his brother screaming for help.

Hillsborough County Fire Rescue spokeswoman Jessica Damico says when the brother got there, the bedroom was gone, and all he saw was part of a mattress sticking up.

There's been no contact with the man since then. Neighbors on both sides of the Seffner home have been evacuated.

Code enforcement deemed it unsafe for rescue workers to continue until engineers can determine the borders of the sinkhole. Damico says the sinkhole is estimated at about 100 feet across.