Banana Link reproduces an article originally written in Spanish by Francisco Carballo in the Diaro Extra, Costa Rica, on 5th August 2023, with the authors permission.
Intoxicated once again! In La Victoria School, Alajuela.
The parents of the children who had been transported to the clinic in Pital arrived seeking further information.
On Friday afternoon, 18 children and 2 adults were poisoned – apparently with a chemical applied to pineapples on a plantation near the school La Victoria, in Rio Cuarto, Alajuela.
This is the second time in a six weeks that such a situation has occurred at the school – the previous time, on 22 June, 12 people were affected.
Rosalyn Sibaja, director of the school, said she was very concerned about the situation, and even more concerned about the lack of response or action from the authorities to prevent such incidents.
According to Sibaja, personnel from the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock and the Municipality of Río Cuarto arrived at the school, but the situation continues. This is despite the fact that the farm had a sanitary order.
DIARIO EXTRA tried to find out the position of the Health department, however, they passed the buck by referring the query to the regional department, which is in charge of collecting information and reviewing permits.
“They are prohibited from applying the products during school hours, while children are in their classes. Officals from the Health department and other institutions even came to the school to collect information, but it didn’t go any further,” she said.
They also approached the owner of the farm, but they did not manage to resolve to the issue.
“Today (yesterday for the reader) I called him to stop the application of the product, because we already had several children affected. As always, it begins with the smell, and then the children start to feel unwell, with headaches and nausea,” she added.
A REPETITION OF EVENTS
The school is reportedly located very close to the pineapple plantation. According to the preliminary report from the Red Cross, fumigation of the plantation began, which caused the children and adults, who are part of the educational staff, to be affected.
The emergency occurred at about 1:20 p.m., when a very strong and penetrating odour began to be detected in the school. Within minutes the children began to feel nausea, stomach pain, vomiting symptoms and irritation of the eyes and skin.