3 sinkholes open in The Villages; homes threatened

Last Updated: Thursday, February 15, 2018, 7:15 PM EST

Several sinkholes have opened up and are threatening homes in The Villages.

  • 3 sinkholes have opened up in The Villages
  • Largest of 3 holes is threatening 2 homes

Officials from the Marion County Sheriff's Office and Marion Emergency Management were at the scene Thursday on McLawren Terrace.

Three holes have opened, the Sheriff's Office said, with largest about 35 foot deep by 18 feet across. That sinkhole appears to be limited to two homes, but it is still caving in and getting bigger.

Four residents have been evacuated.

Officials say the resident of the first home woke up to a noise, came outside and saw a sinkhole right in front of their door. There is a crack on the house that has gotten bigger since Thursday morning.

"There is still dirt falling in the hole," said Lt. John Longacre with The Villages Public Safety Dept. "And you can hear it falling in and hitting water. It's about 20 feet deep."

Utilities to four homes closest to it have been disconnected.

Golf course workers planned to drain a man-made lake to try to alleviate the situation, they said.