Thursday, February 27, 2014

Mercury Spill at Idaho Charter School

Posted By on Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 9:22 AM

Officials at a Magic Valley charter school are investigating how mercury got into their Gooding school Feb. 26, triggering a temporary quarantine.

This morning's Twin Falls Times-News reports that the Gooding Fire Department was called to North Valley Academy Wednesday morning and determined that a small vial of mercury had been left under a heater in the school's back hallway. Of the school's 242 students, four had "negligible" traces of mercury on their shoes, and mercury levels reached about 5,500 nanograms beneath the heater, which according to school officials, "wasn't enough to cause concerns about the air quality."

School officials said no mercury is used inside the school, including in the science labs, and they suspect a student brought the vial into the school.

H2O Environmental, a Boise contractor, was dispatched to the school to help with the cleanup. H2O crews were expected to be back on the scene today. Meanwhile, the school has returned to its normal class schedule.

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