Saturday, January 16, 2021
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Ocala

Vehicle flips after massive sinkhole opens up on busy Marion County roadway

An enormous sinkhole opened up on Baseline Road in Marion County early Sunday morning, bringing down a large utility pole holding traffic signals and causing a vehicle crash that left a 60-year-old Summerfield man seriously injured.

Florida Highway Patrol troopers and personnel from the Marion County Sheriff’s Office were at the corner of Baseline Road and Dogwood Road early Sunday morning after a sinkhole opened up and took out a large support pole holding traffic signals. The southbound lanes of Baseline Road reopened about 10:45 a.m. but the northbound lanes were expected to be closed most of the day.

The sinkhole opened up after 5 a.m. at the corner of Baseline Road and Dogwood Road and took down a large support pole. The Summerfield man’s vehicle was traveling south on Baseline Road when its front end collided with downed cable lines that held up traffic lights. The collision caused the vehicle’s back end to raise off the ground and flip before coming to rest on its wheels facing north, according to a Florida Highway Patrol report.

The support pole and cable lines holding traffic control lights fell onto Baseline Road at the intersection with Dogwood Road early Sunday morning after a large sinkhole opened up. A Summerfield man was injured when his vehicle crashed into the cables connected to the downed traffic control lights.

Marion County Sheriff’s Sgt. Paul Bloom reported from the scene early Sunday morning that his agency’s Emergency Management Division quickly responded to the scene with FHP troopers, as did crews from Duke Energy. He said the southbound lanes of Baseline Road reopened at about 10:45 a.m. and power had been restored to nearby area residents who were affected by the incident.

Bloom also said work would take place at the normally busy intersection for most of the day. He said the nearby landfill would remain open but encouraged motorists to steer clear of the area if possible.

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