A sinkhole caused by a water main break in Bladensburg, Maryland, devoured two cars and caused flooding in several homes in the area early Tuesday morning, reports NBC4 Washington. The highlight of the event was, however, the lucky escape of a five-member family from the sinkhole moments before they managed to scramble out of their doomed four-wheeler.
According to WJLA, the family, which consisted of the parents, an infant, a four-year-old girl, and a seven-year-old boy, managed to get out of their car a few seconds before it was swallowed by the giant sinkhole. The sinkhole had apparently formed right in front of their porch, and the family was in a bid to escape it and also save their car from being devoured by the sinkhole.
The seven-year-old boy, narrating his harrowing experience, told reporters the following.
“There was water and then we had to get of of the car and then… the car got in the hole… The water was very cold too.”
Meanwhile, Luz Martinez, who lives across the street from where the lucky family stayed, witnessed the whole thing happening right in front of her eyes. She says that the family escaped because they hadn’t worn their seat belts.
“They were running to leave. Thank God they didn’t put their seat belts on. It helped them get out of the car.”
Martinez added that she, too, was affected by the water main break — and that water had filled up to knee-level in her basement. Her home, however, escaped the wrath of the sinkhole. Several other homes in the vicinity, too, have been affected.
Meanwhile, the sinkhole continued to grow in size and consumed the family’s car almost entirely. Only its right, rear section was visible out of the water, with the rest under water. Another car parked in the area also fell gradually towards the sinkhole, with its nose completely under water.
The fact that the water main break, and the subsequent formation of the sinkhole, happened on a rainy, snowy day added to the resident’s troubles. Locals were seen running back and forth trying to save their belongings from being flooded by taking them to safer homes in the area.
A few hours after the incident, officials from the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) crews arrived. They managed to repair a 12-inch, 90-year-old pipe that was the cause of the sinkhole. Both the cars were later removed from the scene on the same day. Officials are now trying to repair the damaged street. They also posted updates on their official Twitter.
Water main partial shutdown. Next step is to drain the hole remove cars and dig out around the break. pic.twitter.com/vTQPIwYHoy
— WSSC Water News (@WSSCWaterNews) January 27, 2015
Last year, too, the Inquisitr had had reported about a giant sinkhole in Maryland that resulted in several cars being sucked in.
[Image via WSSC]