May 11th, 2010
11:07 AM ET

Report: At least 2 in family die after sinkhole swallows home

[Update 9:59 p.m. ET] Two members of a family whose home was swallowed by a sinkhole were found dead Tuesday evening, officials said, CNN affiliate CBC reports.

The condition of two other family members was not available. All four members of the family were found in the basement of the home, Michel C. Doré, Quebec's associate deputy public security minister,told the CBC.

[Update 2:49 p.m. ET] The mud-caked dog of a Canadian family has been found in a sinkhole that swallowed their home, but searchers have found no signs of the couple and their two daughters, ages 9 and 11, CNN affiliate CBC reported Tuesday afternoon.

Yvon Desrochers, uncle of homeowner Richard Préfontaine, told CBC he fears his nephew and his family were in the home’s basement watching the Montreal Canadiens-Pittsburgh Penguins hockey playoff game Monday night when the ground gave way beneath the home, about 40 miles northeast of Montreal.

[Posted  11:07 a.m. ET] A Quebec family of four was missing Tuesday after a massive sinkhole swallowed their home, according to reports from CNN affiliates.

Authorities said the home fell 30 feet into the hole when it opened around 9:30 p.m. Monday. A couple in their 40s and two children, ages 9 and 11, were believed to be inside, according to a report by CNN affiliate CBC news.

The couple’s vehicles were seen outside the house and efforts to reach them by cell phone were unsuccessful, authorities told the CBC.

"We tried to reach them by phone, because the father always wears his cellphone on him," Quebec Provincial Police Sgt. Ronald McKinnis told CBC. "The firefighters heard the cellphone, but they weren't able to [locate] it."

The hole was about 500 yards long and forced the evacuation of five other homes in the town of Saint-Jude, in a rural area near the Yamaska River about 40 miles northeast of Montreal, CNN affiliate CTV reported.

McKinnis told the CBC that the hole was first reported by a truck driver whose rig fell into it Monday night. He suffered only minor injuries, McKinnis said.

Search-and-rescue dogs were being called in to help the search, according to a report in the Montreal Gazette, and a helicopter was circling the area looking for signs of movement.

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Filed under: Canada
soundoff (335 Responses)
  1. B

    Has anyone stopped to think that maybe the oil that we are removing from the earths core is actually keeping the core cooler? Global warming is happening from the inside out because the core is getting warmer with every gallon that we remove. Go Green, Ride a Bike.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  2. SL

    Really hope that they are safe.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jackie

    Brandon – Comment #19 – You are an insensitive pig. It wouldn't be so "humourous" to you if it were your family. You need help.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Mark in st. petersburg

    How much misinformation can fit on one page?

    I've kept reading this just to see how ridiculous it gets.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jakkabba

    i love bacon

    May 11, 2010 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Ben

    This is a righteous judgment from God. He opened the earth just like He did in the matter of Korah in Numbers 16.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
  7. eddie

    mother nature says its time to fight back

    May 11, 2010 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
  8. David (Georgia)

    And one more thing, God didn't have a damn thing to do with it.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Dean Kinney

    Sinkholes are not nature it is really caused by the tectonic plates under ground that when they touch each other they can some times cover each other and then they will heat up and more than science proves will heat the surface thus liquefying the crust of the Earth thus letting whatever in that curtain area sink in to the ground then when they pull apart, thus cooling the Earth's crust and turning it back to a solid.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jakkabba

    god speaks to me through my dog and says all you religious people are nuts mwuahahahahahaha!!!!~~~~

    May 11, 2010 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Bakarr

    If the sinkhole eats the home, what did they think happened to the family??
    I know people might not want to think the worst, but it's just part of life.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jose Mojica

    " We must accept finite dissapointment, but we must never lose infinite hope"

    Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

    May 11, 2010 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Jakkabba

    "we must accept a free drink at a bar but never accept dropping the soap in jail"- Bernie Madoff

    May 11, 2010 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
  14. BobMD

    Why do they say the family is missing? Has anybody thought to look in the hole?

    May 11, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  15. MICHELE

    WHY ARE THEY NOT OPENING UP THE ROOF TO SEE IF THE FAMILY WENT TO HIGHER GROUND IN THE HOUSE???

    May 11, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
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