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Car Plunges Into Former Cesspool In Rockville Centre

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A Long Island woman was parking her car when it was suddenly swallowed by a sinkhole Friday afternoon.

As CBS 2′s Tracee Carrasco reported, the incident happened on Driscoll Avenue in Rockville Centre at around 1:30 p.m.

Footage from the scene shows the car fell in up to its rear wheels. The vehicle was pointed almost straight down, with the trunk visible above street level.

Gayle Sorrentino, 69, was in the driver’s seat when the ground beneath her started to collapse.

“I just went to park my car…in the spot where I always park my car on the apron of the driveway and the ground fell out from under me,” Sorrentino recounted.

The Rockville Centre resident told 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera she was able to call 911 from her cell phone while she was trapped.

The power windows were still functioning and firefighters were able to put down a ladder and lift Sorrentino out of the window, Rivera reported.

Friend Howard Osborn told CBS 2′s Janelle Burrell he was inside Sorrentino’s home when he heard an odd sound and rushed outside to find her stuck inside the car.

“She couldn’t get out of the car and she was really afraid. It happened so quickly,” Osborn said. “She was afraid the rest of the dirt was going to collapse trapping her.”

Rockville Centre officials said the sinkhole was once the site of a cesspool. It is not clear whether the rain and snow contributed to the collapse.

Firefighters said the hole is between 10 and 12 feet deep.

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