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Merrol Hyde school evacuated, 17 students hurt after science experiment goes wrong

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Merrol Hyde Magnet School in Hendersonville was evacuated Wednesday morning after a science experiment gone wrong caused a hazmat situation
Michael Schwab, The Tennessean

HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. – Merrol Hyde Magnet School in Hendersonville was evacuated Wednesday morning after a science experiment gone wrong caused a hazmat situation injuring 17 students and a teacher.

Emergency crews responded to the school on Township Drive about 9 a.m., after a chemical explosion took place inside a high school lab, Hendersonville Fire Department Chief Scotty Bush said.

Bush said that it was an unintentional chemical reaction that caused a temporary flash fire, which lasted three to five seconds.

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In all, 17 students were treated and triaged by emergency responders at the scene,  Bush said.

Eight students and a teacher were taken to hospitals, including Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Tristar Skyline Medical Center, according to Bush and to Sumner County Schools spokesman Jeremy Johnson. All are expected to be released today, Bush said, adding they suffered from second-degree burns.

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Merrol Hyde Magnet School was evacuated Wednesday morning after a science experiment gone wrong caused a hazmat situation
Amy Nixon, USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee

“We had a quick response,” Bush said. “I know that’s terrifying to some of the parents at home but … your kids are safe and we’ve got the other ones transported.”

The cause of the fire is under investigation, Bush said, later adding that it was “an accident.”

Bush said that the teacher and school staff acted swiftly and appropriately to the situation, first extinguishing the fire and then evacuating the school.

Both the high school and the middle school were put on early dismissal at 10:15 a.m.

The elementary school was not affected, but dismissed early at 10:30 a.m., Johnson said.

Following cleanup in the building, school is anticipated to resume tomorrow, Bush said.

 

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