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Wednesday, Jun 20, 2018
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Sinkhole opens at Dunedin condo community

Emergency personnel were called this afternoon to a sinkhole at a Dunedin condominium community.

The Dunedin Fire Department responded about 1:30 p.m. to San Christopher Villas, 1311 Powderpuff Drive.

An opening in the road measures about 10 feet wide and 10 feet deep but does not appear to be growing, the fire department said. Underground pipes have been inspected and are in good shape.

City crews are expected to fill the hole soon.

There have been no evacuations.

Late last year another sinkhole opened in the area that ended up leading to the demolition of two homes.

On Nov. 14, a sinkhole hole opened early in the morning at 1112 Robmar Road and swallowed part of that home and a 14-foot boat. The boat was retrieved from the hole, but the opening also damaged a neighboring house at 1100 Robmar Road, where an in-ground swimming pool was also engulfed.

Both homes were demolished.

Sinkholes are common in the three counties in the Tampa Bay area – Hernando, Hillsborough and Pasco – that is known as “sinkhole alley.” Two-thirds of the sinkhole damage claims reported to the state Office of Insurance Regulation between 2006 and 2010 came from those counties. Dunedin is in neighboring Pinellas County and has a history of sinkhole problems.

Sinkholes are common in Florida because the peninsula is made up of porous carbonate rocks such as limestone that store and help move water underground. Over time, the rocks can dissolve from an acid created from oxygen in water, creating a void under the limestone roof. When dirt, clay or sand gets too heavy for the limestone roof, it can collapse, creating a sinkhole.

On Feb. 28, Jeffrey Bush died when a sinkhole opened under his bedroom in Seffner. His body was never recovered. In August, sections of a building at a resort near Orlando collapsed into a sinkhole but no one was injured.

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