Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Businesses evacuated near Tarpon Springs sinkhole

TARPON SPRINGS — A 30-by-40-foot sinkhole opened up Friday afternoon at Oakwood Street near U.S. Highway 19, causing the Tarpon Springs Fire Department to evacuate businesses around the area.

The 12-foot deep breach appeared a little after 2 p.m. in between a large retention pond and a strip center.

Employees of a Mexican restaurant, a salon, a dry cleaner, a marble/granite company and a martial arts studio in the strip center were told to leave. Utilities were shut off as a precaution.

Pinellas County is building a storm water treatment facility on the property where the pond stands, said Ron Garraffa, a spokesman for the county's Public Works Department.

A few nearby residents believe the sinkhole could be linked to the project.

But Garraffa said, "We're not aware of that yet."

County crews were working Friday afternoon to fill in the sinkhole.

"We're working diligently and safely to repair the roadway,'' Garraffa said. "We will assess the level of permanent repairs tonight and tomorrow.''

Neighbors have their theories on why the sinkhole materialized.

Selwyn Dusheiko, who has an accounting business on Oakwood Street, said big flatbed vehicles carrying tons of concrete are a common sight on the little road.

"There's been a lot of heavy trucks since they've been fixing up the retention pond,'' he said. "They've been working on it for over two months.''

Resident Alan Carlson said the shaking from machinery has caused cracks in the walls of his apartment building.

"This whole thing's a mess,'' he said. "They've kept it hush, hush.''

Reach Eileen Schulte at or (727) 445-4153.

Businesses evacuated near Tarpon Springs sinkhole 08/07/09 [Last modified: Friday, August 7, 2009 8:16pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Florida education news: Computer coding, guidance counseling, career planning and more


    SESSION STARTERS: State Sen. Jeff Brandes refiles legislation to allow Florida high school students to swap computer coding for foreign language credits.

  2. Rays morning after: Offense showing some life



  3. Protectors of Confederate statue readied for a battle that never materialized

    Local Government

    BROOKSVILLE — Big Dixie flags were waving. County employees had erected a barrier around the Confederate soldier statue at Main and Broad streets. Roads and parking areas were blocked off. Uniformed local officers and federal law enforcement patrolled.

    Police tape and barricades surround the Confederate statue in Brooksville.
  4. Manhattan Casino choice causes political headache for Kriseman


    ST. PETERSBURG — Days before the mayoral primary, Mayor Rick Kriseman's decision to let a Floribbean restaurant open in Midtown's historic Manhattan Casino has caused political angst within the voting bloc he can least afford to lose: the black community.

    Last week Mayor Rick Kriseman chose a Floribbean restaurant concept to fill Midtown's historic Manhattan Casino. But that decision, made days before next week's mayoral primary, has turned into a political headache for the mayor. Many residents want to see the building's next tenant better reflect its cultural significance in the black community. [JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times]
  5. FSU-Bama 'almost feels like a national championship game Week 1'


    The buzz is continuing to build for next Saturday's blockbuster showdown between No. 1 Alabama and No. 3 Florida State.