I appreciate getting these headlines. Some of them jump out at you as seeming a bit odd. In this instance they closed a whole school because of a broken thermometer found in a drawer. When I read that I thought, hey kids, if you want a new and creative way to get a day off of school, just break a thermometer.
Is this an example of "the safety dance", we read about in the Chemworld article or is it me who is getting old and becoming too tolerant of chemical hazards?
"BROKEN THERMOMETER SHUTS DOWN SCHOOL
Tags: us_OR, education, release, response, mercury
A science teacher‰??s discovery of a broken mercury thermometer in a drawer at Payette High School led to the school‰??s closure on Monday.
No students were exposed to mercury when the broken thermometer was discovered in a science classroom at the school.
A teacher noticed the broken mercury thermometer in a drawer as she was cleaning it out. This information was sent in an email to Payette Superintendent Robin Gilbert by high school principal Jason Dransfield at 11:52 a.m. Monday, and at 12:30 p.m., was also sent to parents.
According to the email, the teacher who discovered the broken thermometer reported to administrators that mercury may have spilled inside the drawer.
‰??Poison control, DEQ, and local fire department were contacted,‰?? Dransfield wrote in his email to Gilbert. ‰??The drawer was sealed shut, students were relocated, the doors to the room were sealed and ventilation to the room was shut off.‰??
The reason the ventilation was shut off, according to Payette Fire Chief Steve Castenada, was to prevent the mercury spill from becoming airborne, thereby potentially spreading to the rest of the school."
Wayne Wood | Director, Environmental Health and Safety ‰?? Directeur, SantÌ©, securitÌ© et environnement| McGill University | 3610 rue McTavish Street, 4th floor | Montreal, Quebec, Canada, H3A 1Y2 | Tel: (514) 398-2391
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