(CINCINNATI) – As of August 26th, 2019, Eastern Greene Schools will resume normal operations after several different agencies tested the air inside of the school. All of these tests came back negative for any harmful substances.
The incident started on Thursday when two students and three staff members began complaining of upper respiratory problems while being in the middle school library just prior to the school releasing for the day.
The staff at Eastern School went into quick action by calling 911 and then sealed off the library by taping the doors off while following school protocol.
Once Center-Jackson Fire Territory arrived on scene, units donned personal protective equipment and entered the school to check the air quality.
Nothing was located by fire crews. Fire units then contacted Northern Monroe Fire Territory for their hazmat team to respond. Indiana State Fire Marshal’s Hazardous Material Division also responded to assist with air testing. A series of tests were performed and no hazards were detected.
The Greene County Health Department also responded to assist. The Indiana State Department of Health, Indoor Air Section was contacted and performed air tests on Friday and nothing abnormal was found.
On Sunday, the Greene County Health Department and the Indoor Air Section returned to perform another series of tests. Those results were found to be negative as well.
It is believed that the issue that caused the problems dissipated quickly in the library and cleared out. Officials have interviewed several staff and students and we are unable to rule out the use of a laminator in an improper ventilated room.
The air handler was not turned on in the library at that time, which caused very little, or no air movement. The laminator could have released ozone which matched the symptoms.
The school has released the following statement:
For precautionary reasons, the laminator has been removed. We understand that the community wanted more answers during this incident but we didn’t have the answers to give.
We would like to thank the community for supporting the school and all other agencies that were involved and remember that we had the students and staff safety in our thoughts when all of the decisions were made.
We will be meeting in the near future with everyone involved to debrief and analyze all safety procedures that were taken.