Unicoi County closes school near sinkhole

ERWIN, Tenn. (AP) -- The sinkhole won. Unicoi County has closed an elementary school.

The county school board voted unanimously to permanently close Love Chapel Elementary School on Thursday after receiving an engineering report on the school ground.

After the vote, Director of Schools Denise Brown told the Johnson City Press the county can't send students back into an unsafe environment.

A passer-by spotted the sinkhole Aug. 18 and notified authorities. The chasm turned out to be 120 feet deep and grew to 25 feet in diameter.

Students were assigned to different schools and Love Chapel remained closed.

Brown said test borings and seismograph readings showed sinkholes in four areas and two others were in the process of developing holes.

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