Assessment underway after sinkhole discovered at Rheems Elementary School

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RHEEMS, Pa. (WHTM) – Parents and guardians of students at Rheems Elementary School were provided with a letter Thursday from the Elizabethtown Area School District concerning a sinkhole that was discovered on the school’s property.

The “moderate size sinkhole” was discovered Thursday morning between the sidewalk and the northern exterior wall of the school, according to the letter from Dr. Michele Balliet.

The sinkhole was roped off while an engineer and architect were contacted.

Officials determined the building was safe to be occupied given the size of the sinkhole and its proximity to the foundation.

A professional excavation team is stabilizing the sinkhole through work that was to be completed Thursday as part of a short-term solution.

For a long-term solution, the district says it will work with engineers to conduct a more “expansive geotechnical analysis of the sinkhole and surrounding grounds.” That assessment is expected to be completed within 10 days.

According to the letter, “a scope of work to remedy the sinkhole will be developed” based on the findings of the assessment.

In the meantime, those with questions or concerns are encouraged to contact the district’s Director of School and Community Information, Troy Portser, by phone at 717-361-4872 or by email at troy_portser@etownschools.org.Get breaking news, weather and traffic on the go. Download our News App and our Weather App for your phone and tablet.

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