Massive hole opens at site of 2013 Seffner sinkhole that swallowed man

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office says a 20-foot hole has opened in the ground at 240 Faithway Drive in Seffner, the same location of a sinkhole in 2013 that swallowed a man in his home. (WFLA)

SEFFNER, FL (WFLA) — The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office says a massive sinkhole has re-opened in the ground at 240 Faithway Drive in Seffner. That is the same location in Seffner where a massive sinkhole opened up in 2013, swallowing a home and killing resident Jeffrey Bush as he slept in his bedroom.

View of Seffner sinkhole from Eagle 8 (WFLA)
View of Seffner sinkhole from Eagle 8 (WFLA)

RELATED: Facts about Florida Sinkholes

Crews were never able to retrieve Bush’s body and the home was demolished a short time after. The land has been cleared in that location where the sinkhole opened Wednesday morning.

The hole that opened Wednesday morning is reportedly 17-feet in diameter and 20-feet deep.

PHOTOS: Massive sinkhole opens at site of deadly 2013 sinkhole in Seffner

Hillsborough County Fire Rescue crews and the Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene Wednesday morning, as well as code enforcement to assess the scene. No surrounding homes have been evacuated.

In March 2013, 37-year-old Jeffrey Bush was in his bedroom when the earth opened and swallowed him and everything else in his room. Five other family members were in the house but escaped unharmed. Bush’s brother, Jeremy, jumped into the hole to try to help, but he had to be rescued himself by a sheriff’s deputy. Bush’s body was never recovered. Authorities leveled the sinkhole site demolishing Bush’s home and two nearby houses.


Sinkhole upsetting to family of Jeffrey Bush

Seeing a new sinkhole on Faithway Drive is like reliving an old nightmare for Jeremy Bush. “It brings back memories. I think about it every day. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about it,” said Bush as he wiped away tears. In February of 2013 his brother Jeffrey Bush was asleep in his bedroom when a hold opened up under his bed and took his life.

Jeremy Bush could hear his brother screaming for help.

“There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about it. I have a hard time sleeping at night because of it,” said Bush. Wednesday morning a neighbor noticed a new hole had opened in the same location.  “The hole that you see behind us is in an identical location that the tragedy occurred,” said Ron Spiller with Hillsborough County Code Enforcement. Spiller says the county immediately brought in an engineer to evaluate the new opening in the earth.

“We’ve had the engineering firm out here to evaluate it and the important thing is there is no danger to any other homes,” said Spiller. After the hole opened up in 2013, Hillsborough County purchased the home where Bush had been sleeping and the home next door. The homes were demolished and the hole was filled in.

Spiller says the new hole in the same location is the result of recent heavy rains.  “It wasn’t expected, but it’s not uncommon because of the repair that was made and clearly the rainfall that we’ve had contributed to the failure,” said Spiller.

FILE PHOTO: Jeffrey Bush
FILE PHOTO: Jeffrey Bush

Rachel Wicker is the sister-in-law of Jeffrey Bush and says the family is still trying to recover from his loss and the loss of their home.
“Losing everything and then having to gain it all back is very hard, even though it’s been three years,” said Wicker.

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