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West Baltimore School Evacuated Again Due To Carbon Monoxide

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — For the second time in one week, a West Baltimore school is evacuated because of a carbon monoxide leak. 

Andrea Fujii reports one student from Dickey Hill Elementary and Middle School was taken to the hospital.

Even before school started, hundreds of Dickey Hill students were told to go home.

“I wanted to make sure he was alright, so I rushed by here,” said Ollie Williams, parent.

At about 7:30, an unusual odor was reported in the cafeteria.

Once hazmat and firefighters arrived, they determined there was a carbon monoxide leak and evacuated the school.

“We later identified the culprit to be a rotisserie-style cooking appliance in the kitchen area,” said Chief Kevin Cartwright, Baltimore Fire Department.

Forty-five students and faculty were evacuated and were all found to be fine, except for one student complaining of stomach cramps who was taken to the hospital as a precaution.

“Knowing that they’re in school and thinking they’re safe, and it’s a gas leak and they can get sick and be in the hospital,” said Pia Hazelwood, parent.

This is the second scare for parents, as last Tuesday there was a similar leak in the cafeteria.  No one was seriously hurt.

“Last week was an actual leak from a malfunction of a steam table. This week it’s a combination of an oven that we’re evaluating, but we don’t really know if the oven malfunctioned or if the exhaust system isn’t working as well as it should,” said Keith Scroggins, Baltimore City School.

 This leak was 52 parts per million, which is considered low, but can cause serious illness if exposed for a long time.

The school is now being ventilated, and that rotisserie in Tuesday’s leak has been turned off. Cold lunches will be served until it is fixed.

City schools leaders say students at Dickey Hill will return to class Wednesday.


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