Sinkhole grows between homes in The Villages

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. — A depression that started off as a small hole in The Villages has grown larger and has put residents on heightened alert.

Landscaping crews spotted the depression Monday between two homes on Lavaca Lane in Sumter County.

One homeowner, who uses a wheelchair, packed some of his belongings and left. Another neighbor said he's becoming more worried.

"Absolutely amazing. We were dumbfounded and terribly shocked," said neighbor Frank Topping, who has lived in his home for 20 years.

The sinkhole, which was noticeably larger Wednesday, threatened the structural integrity of Topping's home, so he evacuated it.

"We're about to go in and make sure that we haven't gotten any cracks in the walls or ceiling," he said.

The Sumter County building inspector told Channel 9 that engineers are expected to assess the home and stabilize the sinkhole. Topping said he has contacted his insurance company to review his options.

No injuries or damage have been reported. It's unclear how deep the hole is.

A cluster of sinkholes has also formed in a nearby retention pond, draining the pond of its water.