San Jose firefighters were sent Thursday morning to rescue a woman possibly trapped in a manhole at the Spanish Cove Mobile Home Park, but after at least two dozen personnel went to find her, she was nowhere to be found.
Reports of a woman possibly trapped in a manhole on a street in the 2600 block of Senter Road came in at 8:30 a.m. Residents at the park said they heard a "tapping" inside the manhole.
Crews bearing oxygen tanks descended into the hole about 9:30 a.m., but in less than 20 minutes, the manhole cover was back on and the crew was debriefing. At least 24 search and rescue workers could be seen standing in a circle listening to their commander.
It wasn't immediately clear what prompted the report of the trapped woman, though Battalion Chief Cleo Doss said sometimes sounds echo and emanate from manholes. The manhole leads to a storm drain, which leads to Coyote Creek, where many homeless live.
It's not unheard of, Doss said, for homeless voices to "echo up" and transmit through the storm drain. "Yes, we have been here in the past."
NBC Bay Area's Lisa Fernandez and Tim Bollinger contributed to this report.