POTTSTOWN PA – An evacuation of Pottsgrove Middle School was under way Thursday (Dec. 13, 2012) at 11:26 a.m. in what Pottsgrove School District administrators characterized as “unrelated medical incidents,” but what some media outlets were reporting as potential cases of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Media details of the incident were widely divergent, and the exact cause is still being investigated. One Philadelphia television station at noon reported police claims that “Pottsgrove students were sick from being under hot lights while rehearsing for (a) play.” Twitter reports said evacuated students who were not ill were taken to Pottsgrove High School.
Several reports claimed at least nine students so far had passed out, and that several were being transported from the school building on North Hanover Street to Pottstown Memorial Medical Center at East High Street and Armand Hammer Boulevard, and to Phoenixville Hospital. Two other reports cited up to 23 students affected. Several emergency medical service ambulances and fire companies were called out for what Montgomery County dispatchers labeled a “hazmat emergency.”
The district, in an e-mail broadcast, acknowledged “medical personnel (were) on the scene,” and administrators and others were “currently evaluating the situation.”
Parents were being urged “not (to) attempt to pick up children at this time. Please call the main office at 610-327-2277 with any questions,” the district advised.
- Students Sickened At Pottsgrove Middle School (Fox 29 TV)
- Pottsgrove School Evacuated After Pupils Pass Out (Philadelphia Inquirer)
- 23 Students Sickened After Possible Carbon Monoxide Leak At Montgomery Co. School (CBS3 TV)
- Pottsgrove M.S. Evacuated For Possible Co Leak (The Mercury)
- Hot Lights Lead to Sick Students, Not CO: Police (NBC10 TV)
Photo by John Strickler of The Mercury via Twitter