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Floor buckles in duplex from fourth possible sinkhole in Seffner

12:14 PM, Mar 27, 2013   |    comments
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SEFFNER, Fla. (WTSP) -- Two Seffner families were forced out of their homes after a possible sinkhole caused cracks in the exterior walls and a buckled interior floor.

"I guess from me walking around, the floor seemed soft and started moaning and making noise, and that's when I started getting scared," said resident Jessica Alfaro.

Hillsborough County Fire Rescue immediately responded and helped evacuate residents from both units, slapping warning stickers on the windows, but officials aren't sure what they are dealing with yet.

"It could be settlement, it could be something worse, but for us, there is no way for us to know so we're calling in the experts. And for one side to move upward, the opposite side could be moving downward. There is movement, and some of the ground around the house is soft," said Hillsborough County Fire Rescue information officer Jessica Damico.

The family in the south unit grabbed what they could after 911 operators told them to move quickly, but moving a baby and a father with limited mobility isn't easy.

"We were able to get the baby formula, medication, the dog cages and food, and my father's sleep apnea machine, so we were able to get out with just about everything we really need," said Alfaro.

Neighbors watch as the displaced families carried out their belongings, wondering if they may be next.

"It's close, so I'm just keeping my fingers crossed," said neighbor Donna Johnston.

If confirmed to be a sinkhole, it'd be the fourth one to open up in Seffner in less than a month.  

Jeffrey Bush was killed when a sinkhole opened up in his bedroom in late February, a second hole came a week later on Cedar Tree Lane that forced a family to vacate, and a third hole opened up just days ago in a Shore Ranch Drive yard.

Charles Billi, WTSP

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