17/02/2014 16:53 GMT | Updated 18/02/2014 05:59 GMT

UK Weather: Homes Evacuated After Sinkhole Appears In Ripon, North Yorkshire

Three houses have been evacuated amid fears they could collapse after a huge 25-ft wide sinkhole opened up in a street.

Police cleared the properties on Magdalen's Close in Ripon, North Yorkshire, at 5.40pm after receiving reports the huge sinkhole had appeared.

A North Yorkshire police spokesman said: "The affected property and two houses nearby have been evacuated and a cordon has been put in place to protect members of the public. At this stage no injuries have been reported."

The sinkhole appeared in the early evening

Officers were carrying out house-to-house checks in the area to warn people close to the affected properties.

Police, fire crews and the ambulance service remained at the scene with utility services' engineers and structural engineers who were assisting with the incident.

The sinkhole is the latest in a spate to appear after a 35ft wide and 20ft deep one also appeared on Saturday morning under homes in a quiet cul-de-sac in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire.

Last week a stretch of the M2 in north Kent was closed after a 15ft-deep hole was discovered in the central reservation and on February 2, a teenager's car was swallowed after a 30ft-deep crater appeared on a family's driveway in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.

North Yorkshire fire and rescue service said that a fire engine and a heavy rescue unit from Ripon were at the scene, where cracks had appeared in the ground, damaging to a building.

A spokeswoman said: "There are no occupiers in the property and a dog has been successfully rescued. Residents from adjacent properties have been evacuated as a precaution.

"The crews have cordoned off the area and are awaiting the arrival of specialist engineers."

The spokeswoman said the sinkhole was about 25 feet wide.