A sinkhole has swallowed up a car and its three passengers in the coastal city of Trujillo, central Peru.

The family was pulled to safety by passers-by after the five-metre wide by three-metre deep chasm opened up in the middle of the road.

Once the couple, Edgar Orlanda Bartolo Silva, 34, Marisol Mercedes Gutierrez Siccha, 31, and their two-year-old daughter, had escaped from the car, cranes were used to winch the vehicle to safety. 

The family were then rescued from the hole with ropes. 

A sinkhole is a cavity in the ground caused by water erosion. They can open up if there is excess surface water that needs somewhere to drain. 

Heavy rain and flooding are thought to be to blame for the sinkhole.