• Credit: Orlando Sentinel

Residents and guests at the Summer Bay Resort in Clermont, Florida, had to flee their bedrooms in the middle of the night on Sunday as a 60-foot sinkhole opened up and began to swallow part of the complex, the Miami Herald reported ("Sinkhole causes resort villa to partially collapse," by Alma Rodriguez/Associated Press). "Authorities were called to the scene, about 10 miles west of Disney World, late Sunday where they found that the building was making popping sounds and windows were breaking," the paper reports.

CNN has this report: ("Florida sinkhole swallows parts of resort near Disney World," by AnneClaire Stapleton). "A roughly 15-foot-deep crater swallowed much of one building, Lake County Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Tony Cuellar said. Aerial video from CNN affiliate WFTV showed one end of the building -- which had held two-bedroom, two-bathroom villas -- still standing, but the rest reduced to pile of debris," the network reports. "The evacuation started after 10:30 p.m., when a guest told a security guard about a 'window blowing out,' resort president Paul Caldwell told reporters Monday morning. After another window broke in the guard's presence, one of the buildings began visibly sinking about 11 p.m., Caldwell said. No injuries were reported. A couple and their infant escaped through a window because a door frame collapsed, witness Maggie Ghamry told WFTV."

"Florida has a long, ongoing problem with sinkholes, which cause millions of dollars in damage in the state annually," the Herald notes. "On March 1, a sinkhole underneath a house in Seffner, about 60 miles southwest of the Summer Bay Resort, swallowed a man who was in his bed. His body was never recovered. But such fatalities and injuries are rare, and most sinkholes are small. Sinkholes can develop quickly or slowly over time. They are caused by Florida's geology - the state sits on limestone, a porous rock that easily dissolves in water, with a layer of clay on top."