Sinkhole in Doris Jenkins' Driveway: A Case for More Insurance?

Doris Jenkins sinkhole, Bethlehem Township, Pa.

Another headline-grabbing sinkhole has hit the news, this time opening up in the front yard of a Pennsylvania home, though the house and its occupants luckily avoided damage. It should show you the threat that homes face in areas prone to sinkholes -- and give you yet another reason to be convinced that sinkhole insurance is necessary for homeowners in these areas. Doris Jenkins of Bethlehem Township, Pa., stepped outside her home to walk her dog Sunday only to find a 40-foot-wide sinkhole that had swallowed part of her driveway in her front yard, NBC Philadelphia reported.

"I wasn't thinking that this was how I was going to be spending my Sunday afternoon," Jenkins told the TV station. Jenkins and her family had to evacuate the home while engineers tested the property and the structure of the house. The Jenkins were fortunate in that their house was deemed safe to occupy, and the family was able to return to their home. But the story of another sinkhole that opened up under a Florida home just over a week ago did not end so happily. A 36-year-old resident of suburban Tampa, Jeff Bush, was declared dead after falling into the sinkhole that opened up under his bedroom on Feb. 28. His body has not been recovered. The house in Seffner that he shared with his brother and four others was torn apart and eventually had to be razed.

Areas all over the United States are prone to sinkholes, and they can be just as dangerous as these two incidents. It's for that reason that homeowners should be aware of what their home insurance will and will not cover in case of sinkhole damage. And you'd be surprised that few know whether they're covered.

Find out why you might need sinkhole insurance.

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