Sink Hole Becomes a Tourist Attraction

by Michael Mosher on June 18, 2012

Their home is now a tourist attraction and they don’t even live there anymore.

The family from western Alachua County was chased out of their home by a sinkhole.

It’s been a month since the sinkhole busted open, but people keeping dropping by to check out the huge hole.

“Last week I noticed 20 to 25 cars,” said Kevin Tomlinson.

The cars were driving down SW 5th Ave off of 119th street to take a peek at this massive sinkhole in Jonesville.

We were in the neighborhood for an hour and we saw three cars stop and take a look.

Kevin Tomlinson lives in the house next to where the sinkhole is growing.

He said there isn’t much to see anymore, now that the homeowners have removed the shed that was hanging over the hole.

“You really can’t see anything from the road. It’s behind a locked gate, but that again it’s just human nature to want to see the hole,” said Tomlinson.

He told us the night it was first discovered he heard something that sounded like thunder, but you can see it was a whole lot more.

“I haven’t looked at thunder the same way. Every time I have heard thunder since it’s kind of raised my ear up and listen extra close,” said Tomlinson.

The Matheny family moved out of the house shortly after. Since the hole continued to grow.

Tomlinson said he’s not worried about the sinkhole spreading to his house because of the tall trees that divide his property and Matheny’s property. He said the trees have been there for the past 40 years and he believes the roots are strong enough to stop the sinkhole from reaching his home.

Chris Bird is with the Alachua County Environmental Protection Agency. He said trees may possibly help stop the spread, but they may not.

“We’ve seen oak tress disappear into the bottom of sink holes. We’ve seen old oak tress, so it’s just really hard to say,” said Bird.

The sink hole was 60 by 45 feet back in May. Bird said he doesn’t know exactly how big it is, but he knows it’s definetely larger than before.

Bird told us it’s up to Methany whether or not he wants to fill the hole or just leave it there.

Tomlinson said if it stays there, he doesn’t mind if people keep coming by.

“We just ask that we respect mr. methany’s property,” said Tomlinson.

Methany was not available for this report, but we do understand he had sinkhole insurance and is currently living in a nearby condominium community.

 

Full article …here

 

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