Sinkhole Drains Retention Pond In Ocala
Published August 21st, 2013
Now you see it... now you don't.
North Central Florida's concerns about sinkholes after a very wet summer... have been realized in one neighborhood.
But it wasn't a home that was victimized.
A body of water that once stood at the intersection of Southeast 17th Street and 25th Avenue in Ocala is no longer there.
But this isn't the first time it has disappeared.
Many residents started to notice something was wrong when the fountain that was once in the middle of the pond seemed lower than usual.
"Here there was a bunch of neighbors. And one of them said, "it's a sinkhole" and you could see it opening up and swirling," said Woodland Villages resident, Constance Quigley.
Tuesday afternoon an apparent sinkhole swallowed a retention pond in a neighborhood in Southeast Ocala.
"At 4 o'clock, I came out and checked it again… it was virtually almost gone. By 7 o'clock last night, this was all gone," said Quigley.
Residents from Woodland Villages could only stand and watch as the water disappeared.
With the pond as a backyard to many, one resident questioned her safety in her own home.
"Last night it was 'mmm, I don't know do we go or do we stay?'," Quigley remembers.
The neighborhood association Property Manager, Wes Herren, closed the nearby clubhouse and pool... and called in engineers to examine the area.
"Nobody has been evacuated, pretty much all of the owners were here when the police we first called, and we determined that the homes appeared to be safe," said Herren.
What use to be a pond admired by residents is now just a puddle.
This is the third sinkhole to happen in this location in 17 years.
Because this pond is no stranger to sinkholes, Herren says engineers think a simple packing and filling of the hole might be the solution.
"Homeowners didn't seem to have much concern cause most of them knew the history," Herren said.
"It's something that's on my mind. It doesn't preoccupy me, but yeah, if you live in Florida there's always that possibility," said Quigley.
Herren says most of the calls he has received were not by residents fearing their safety, but by people who reserved the clubhouse for events this weekend.
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