Fla. Woman Rescued from 40-Foot Sinkhole 11 Hours After Her Car Fell In

A woman who wound up trapped in a sinkhole 40 feet deep in Florida was rescued by firefighters after spending nearly 11 hours stranded.

The woman was driving with a friend through a patch of woods on private land Wednesday night when they crashed into a sinkhole filled with water, according to the High Springs Fire Department. 

Somehow, both the woman and her male friend managed to crawl out of the vehicle’s windows. The man was able to climb out of the sinkhole and call for help, but the woman could not scale the hole’s steep slope. 

First responders arrived on the scene early Thursday morning. High Springs Fire Department Lt. Kevin Pearson was able to repel into the chasm and lift the distressed woman out with harness and rope just before 7:30 a.m. She did not have any serious injuries, the fire department said.

Two ATV riders had to be rescued from the same sinkhole in September. The sinkhole is on private property, the High Springs Fire Department said, and barriers were installed to keep trespassers out. “Private Property” and “No Trespassing” signs are reportedly posted throughout the property. 

According to The Weather Channel, Florida has more sinkholes than any state in the country. Thousands of Floridians have filed sinkhole-related insurance claims in recent years. 

The incident comes the same day a massive sinkhole opened in the parking lot of a hospital in Naples, Italy, swallowing multiple cars and forcing the temporary closure of a nearby residence housing coronavirus (COVID-19) patients. No injuries were reported.

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