Landon Reese of Jackson, Miss., thought he was bicycling through a puddle, his mother said. It turned out to be a sinkhole as deep as some swimming pools.
The 6-year-old "nosedived" into the hole Saturday and nearly drowned, the Clarion-Ledger reports. Tai Shelby, a neighbor, saw the boy's flailing arms and grabbed him.
Landon's mother, Felicia Henderson, told the paper she was trying to teach Landon how to tread water just days earlier, and Shelby said his kicking helped him survive.
According to Mississippi News Now, community residents complained the estimated 6-foot-or-deeper hole is a menace to children but, public works had not responded to their pleas to fix it. The Associated Press reported that public works did place orange barricades beside the sinkhole on Friday and had not returned since.
In March, a man was killed when a sinkhole opened up beneath his suburban Tampa home and swallowed him. According to CNN, many sinkholes develop when acidic rainwater weakens the "limestone or similar rock beneath the soil."