At least 122 pupils treated after suspected poisoning
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Pretoria - At least 122 pupils from Vlakfontein Secondary School were taken to various health facilities following suspected food poisoning yesterday.
Tshwane Emergency Services said it used six ambulances, a 22-seater patient transporter and a major incident bus to transport the pupils.
The department was called to the school just before 10am. School authorities said the pupils complained of abdominal discomfort and running stomachs as early as the first period just after 8am.
“The school immediately sought assistance from a local clinic and made the call to emergency services. Two professional nurses and a staff nurse responsible for the schools in the area also responded and treated the learners before the arrival of emergency services. The learners were immediately transported to Mamelodi hospitals in private vehicles,” said department spokesperson Charles Mabaso.
“Some of the resources had to be cancelled while on the way to the incident because some learners were privately transported.”
Mabaso added that some pupils called the school from home with the same complaint and as a result had to be transported privately.
“According to the school authorities, most of the affected learners are Grade 12 learners. Environmental health practitioners collected food samples from the school for testing. The last meal the learners had from the school was on Tuesday, according to the school authorities,” he said.
In March over 200 pupils from MH Baloyi Secondary School in Mabopane were rushed to hospital after they complained of stomach-related discomfort and vomiting, sparking anger among parents, who blamed the school feeding scheme.
A protest ensued and MEC Panyaza Lesufi rushed there to quell the anger and assure the parents an investigation into the incident would be conducted.