Large depression threatens homes in New Port Richey

NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla — Pasco Fire Rescue responded to a depression that opened up Thursday in New Port Richey.

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The depression formed in the 7400 block of Barclay Road.

A man mowing Megan Denison's yard spotted the hole peeking out from underneath her home. 

The depression, which is measured at 8 feet deep and 8 feet wide, hasn't expanded, but officials warn it's still too dangerous to stay overnight. 

"It's like a beast under there," said Denison. "What if we're in bed and the whole thing just collapsed in, we'd be dead." 

Depending on the depression's movement over the next 24 hours, Denison and her mother may be forced to move out of their home of six years. 

It makes me sad," said Denison. 

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As a precaution, emergency management officials warned two next door neighbors to evacuate. 

But with his home just six feet away from the depression, Jerry Rooney is staying put, for now. 

"It seems like it's OK," said Rooney. "It hasn't gotten any worse in 7 hours, but if it does, I'll be up half the night to be honest with you, watching that, seeing what's happening."

Pasco emergency management officials say the depression has the size and shape to expand into a sinkhole. 

Denison, an aspiring photographer, says she didn't have enough time to grab everything important to her. 

"My pictures of my family," said Denison. "My grandmother, my father. They're not here with me anymore." 

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Pasco Sheriff's deputies are monitoring the depression overnight. Emergency management officials will inspect it Friday morning. 

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