10 students taken to hospital after chemical smell detected at Sacramento elementary school

Ten students were taken to hospital Thursday with minor complaints after being exposed to something that smelled of the chemical in a fourth-grade portable classroom at Ethel Phillips Elementary School in Sacramento, firefighters said. A spokesperson for the City of Sacramento Unified School District confirmed that the source of the smell was most likely a freon leak from a heating, ventilation and air conditioning unit. The students were fine when they left for the hospital and are being monitored, said Capt. Keith Wade of the Sacramento Fire Department. “We’re just grateful that no one was seriously injured,” he said. A hazardous materials team performed tests in the portable classroom before determining the source was likely the freon leak. “Our district facilities team is currently working on the air conditioning unit and will make any necessary repairs or replacement,” spokesman Brian Heap said. “This classroom will not be used again until we are sure it is safe for students and staff.” , said Wade. Several other students had the same complaints, as did the teacher, who then removed all 25 students from the classroom. “The professor did the right thing,” Wade said. The teacher was taken to hospital along with the 10 students who showed symptoms, Wade said. Another student was picked up by his parents. The school was not evacuated and classes have since resumed. But the parents of all the students were called and given the opportunity to pick up their children. Students in the affected mobile classroom will be moved to a new temporary location on Friday, Heap said. Sacramento County public health officials will also be involved in approving classroom safety, Wade said. The county’s public health department told KCRA 3 that freon poisoning “is a serious illness that can lead to difficulty breathing, headache, nausea and vomiting, skin and eye irritation and cough”. : labored breathing, irregular heartbeat, accumulation of fluid in the lungs, confusion, mental fatigue, loss of consciousness and convulsions.

Ten students were taken to hospital Thursday with minor complaints after being exposed to something that smelled of the chemical in a fourth-grade portable classroom at Ethel Phillips Elementary School in Sacramento, firefighters said.

A spokesperson for the City of Sacramento Unified School District confirmed that the source of the smell was most likely a freon leak from a heating, ventilation and air conditioning unit.

The students were fine when they left for the hospital and are being monitored, said Capt. Keith Wade of the Sacramento Fire Department.

“We’re just grateful that no one was seriously injured,” he said.

A hazardous materials team performed tests in the portable classroom before determining the source was likely the freon leak.

“Our district facilities team is currently working on the air conditioning unit and will make any necessary repairs or replacement,” spokesman Brian Heap said. “This classroom will not be used again until we are sure it is safe for students and staff.”

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The situation unfolded around 9:30 a.m. when a student in the back of the class started feeling nauseous and having an upset stomach, Wade said.

Several other students had the same complaints, as did the teacher, who then removed all 25 students from the classroom.

“The professor did the right thing,” Wade said.

The teacher was taken to hospital along with the 10 students who showed symptoms, Wade said. Another student was picked up by his parents.

The school was not evacuated and classes have since resumed. But the parents of all the students were called and given the opportunity to pick up their children.

Students in the affected mobile classroom will be moved to a new temporary location on Friday, Heap said.

Sacramento County public health officials will also be involved in approving classroom safety, Wade said.

The county’s public health department told KCRA 3 that freon poisoning “is a serious illness that can lead to difficulty breathing, headache, nausea and vomiting, skin and eye irritation and cough”.

It can cause life-threatening problems if left untreated, including: labored breathing, irregular heartbeat, fluid buildup in the lungs, confusion, mental fatigue, loss of consciousness, and seizures.