Emergency services rush to school after chemical spill

By Mary Dennehy

OLD Bawn Community School (OBCS) is back in action following a small chemical spill in one of the science rooms, with two students brought to hospital as a precaution due to minor splash burns.

On Tuesday afternoon (January 22), a call to emergency services was made after there was a spill of 100ml of sulphuric acid, a corrosive substance, in one of the science labs.

Old Bawn CS IMG 2354

Dublin Fire Brigade outside Old Bawn Community School. Photo: Dublin Fire Brigade

It is understood that a teacher was carrying out an experiment with students when a container of sulphuric acid was dropped.

Many people living and working locally had expressed concern after being alerted to an incident at the school, when five fire engines and three ambulances travelled into the area.

Speaking with The Echo after the event, OBCS Principal Paul Crone confirmed that there was no fire, and that everybody was safe.

As reported on Echo.ie on Tuesday afternoon, Mr Crone explained that an emergency call was lodged due to the spillage of a corrosive substance, as per the school’s safety protocol.

“The teachers had neutralised [the sulphuric acid] before emergency services arrived,” Mr Crone said.

“However, emergency services have to assess the area and confirm the room is safe.

“From our point of view, it’s great to see that the protocols in place work really well… and the teachers were commended by the emergency services on how they dealt with the incident.

“Two students were brought to hospital as a precaution due to minor splash burns.”

In an update to The Echo on Wednesday (January 23), Mr Crone confirmed that the teacher and students had returned to school and that all classes were running as normal.

He said: “The Board are delighted with the swift and effective action of the teacher involved to ensure the safety and welfare of the students and the support that was given by all staff members to ensure minimal disruption to the learning environment in the school for other students as this incident was dealt with.

“We will conduct our own internal review of our procedures to update and fine tune our safety plan for dealing with such incidents in the future.

“We thank the emergency services for their swift and effective action.”

Firefighters and advanced paramedics from Dublin Fire Brigade attended the scene, with firefighters ventilating the building with the use of a fan.

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