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Numerous sinkholes open up in Hernando County

Besides high winds, flooding and widespread damage, Tropical Storm Debby has aggravated another ongoing problem.

Sinkholes.

Several opened up in the past couple of days, and officials are concerned about the possibility of more in Hernando and Pasco counties, the state's top region for sinkholes.

In Spring Hill, a sinkhole opened up Tuesday morning along Quality Drive, collapsing the road and closing it between Spring Hill Regional Hospital and Suncoast Elementary School.

In Hudson, a 4-foot-wide hole opened up Tuesday on Majestic Boulevard just north of State Road 52, where the road becomes a bridge over the filled-to-the-brim Bear Creek. The hole closed the road as it heads into the Beacon Woods neighborhood.

And in Hernando County, Mariner Boulevard near Claymore Street remained closed Tuesday morning after several large sinkholes opened up in the area on Monday.

"We've had some flooding before from thunderstorms, but I've never seen anything like this," said Sue Tomason, who lives on Captain Drive, off Mariner. "It's like a river overflowed."

Tomason said she woke up Monday to find several inches of water in her garage. Her neighbors also reported minor flooding.

A few blocks away, 15-year-old Anthony Steele and his friend, Jason Pikes, 14, rode their bikes around a 10-foot-wide sinkhole that had opened up on Claymore, near Lake Forest Drive.

Celinda Jones, who has lived in the neighborhood for more than 20 years, said she had seen several sinkholes in neighbors' yards.

"I'm worried," she said. "What do you do if one opens up next to your house? Pray, I guess."

Sinkholes were also reported at the Hernando County Airport on Taxiway A, the taxi strip that parallels the main runway, but the airport remained open.

Numerous sinkholes open up in Hernando County 06/26/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 26, 2012 2:35pm]
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