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Riverside Dismisses Early After Teacher And Student Collapse

Reported: Feb. 5, 2014 6:38 PM EST
Updated: Feb. 5, 2014 6:51 PM EST
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KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (Kennie Bass) - Students pour out of Riverside High after the school dismissed at 10:30 a.m. A teacher and student fainted as the school's water pipes were being flushed, prompting administrators to empty the building.

"100 percent water okay," Carte David, Riverside senior said. "That's what it is. It should be 100 percent okay to actually be inside the school."

"I think they need to change the water filters, honestly," Ashley Neal, Riverside senior said. "Like, just drain everything out again and don't let us come back until, because I mean people are passing out. What good is it?"

"I realize that these kids need to be in school but they also need to know that a few years down the road we're not going to have to worry about the effects of what's in our water," Cindy Burch, Riverside parent said. "It terrifies me."

Riverside's principal says the school's water has been tested and found to have levels below one part per million and ten parts per billion.

"It has created chaos definitely here for Riverside High School," Valery Harper, Riverside principal said. "And as I spoke to the students today I said that I wish I knew all the answers. I wish I knew why. But at this time all I can do is to do our best to keep you safe."

State Schools Superintendent Jim Phares, Kanawha County Superintendent Ron Duerring and several KCS staffers visited the school after students were gone. Phares says the flushing started early this morning and lasted longer than anticipated.

"They actually started at six o'clock this morning and it took a little bit longer than they thought it was going to is what was explained to me," Phares said.

"I feel better knowing I can go home and that I'm safe there instead of having to smell all of the odors and stuff here," Brooke Young, Riverside junior said.

The mother of the student who was taken to the hospital said he was treated and released. She says he is at home resting. We have no update on the condition of the teacher.

Riverside High School is closed on Thursday. National Guard teams are re-testing the school's water to see if it is safe.



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