Recovery effort ends for Florida man presumed dead in sinkhole
By Saundra Amrhein, ReutersSEFFNER, Florida -- Florida rescue workers ended their efforts on Saturday to recover the body of a man who disappeared into a sinkhole that swallowed his bedroom while he slept and will demolish the suburban Tampa home due to its dangerous conditions, a rescue spokeswoman said.
March 3, 2013, 4:23 pm TWN
Two nearby houses have been evacuated because the sinkhole has weakened the ground under them, and their residents probably will never be allowed inside again, said Jessica Damico of Hillsborough County Fire Rescue.
Jeff Bush, a 36-year-old landscaper, is presumed dead after vanishing into the sinkhole that opened suddenly beneath his room on Thursday night. Five other people in the house were getting ready for bed when they heard a loud crash and Jeff screaming.
His brother was rescued after jumping into the hole and furiously digging in an effort to find him.
Authorities used listening devices and cameras at the scene of the 30-foot (9-meter) wide hole in the ground but detected no signs of life.
"There's nothing compatible with life in this situation," Damico said. "There's no way of possible survival."
She said demolition of the home would begin early on Sunday.
"Our data has come back, and there is absolutely no way we can do any kind of recovery without endangering lives of workers," she said.
Jeff Bush's brother, 35-year-old Jeremy Bush, feared earlier on Saturday that his brother was lost forever. A small memorial of balloons and flowers for Jeff Bush had formed near the home on Saturday morning.
"I thank the Lord for not taking my daughter and the rest of my family," said Jeremy, who worked with his brother in landscaping.