Car with 2 people falls into sinkhole

Published: Aug. 18, 2023 at 11:39 AM CDT
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IRONDEQUOIT, N.Y. (WHAM) - A man and woman were driving in a suburb of Rochester, New York, when suddenly their car was swallowed by a sinkhole.

It happened early Wednesday morning, around 5 a.m.

Good Samaritans who heard the woman’s screams jumped into action.

Water poured out of a car being pulled out of a sinkhole on St. Paul Boulevard in Irondequoit.

Witnesses said the car was found on its side.

Surveillance video captured a different car skipping over that same sinkhole 10 minutes later.

”It was interesting,” said Anthony DeSalvo, who said he was about to get ready for work when he heard two loud crashes, one after another.

“I jumped out of bed and went outside and heard a woman screaming for help,” he said.

DeSalvo said when he got to the scene, what he saw caught him by surprise.

“When I looked to my right, all I saw was a woman’s head peaking out of the ground. It was really hard for my brain to comprehend and process what was happening,” he said.

DeSalvo said when he walked over to the sinkhole, he found a woman standing on her car, trying to get out.

“I was really concerned because it’s a blind spot that another car was going to come by. So, I told the lady to hang tight,” he said. “She seemed OK, and I kind of stood in the road and kind of managed the traffic until my neighbor showed up.”

It wasn’t until his neighbor showed up where they were able to get her out.

“Me and my neighbor grabbed each hand and helped her out of the sinkhole,” DeSalvo said. “It was about 12 feet deep; it was not easy.”

Later that morning, groups of people came out to see the massive sinkhole taking up the two-lane road.

“I couldn’t believe it. It’s so big. It’s huge,” said Dave Streiff, who lives in Irondequoit. “I have a rain gauge, and we got 4 ½ inches on my gauge, which is right down the street, so obviously, some flooding.”

J. Brown, who lives in Rochester, said he believes this could have been worse.

“You wouldn’t expect to come around a corner then find a big hole in the ground and you’re just going in it, especially at 5 o’clock in the morning, probably one of the worst times for something to happen like that,” he said.