An incident has happened today at a chemistry class in school No 8 in Sakhalin. The school staff evacuated all the students immediately and reported the incident to emergency services. Rescuers on duty and those of the Dangerous Chemicals Team of the Emergency Ministry’s V.A. Polyakov Rescue Unit were dispatched to the scene.
By the time the rescuers arrived the evacuation had almost finished – the school had been abandoned by all the people. Chemistry teacher reported to the chief of the team that some 20 milliliters of bromine had been spilt on linoleum floor between the chemistry classroom and the laboratory room. Having put on self-contained breathing apparatuses and picked up ammonia liquid to neutralize bromine, the rescuers went to check the chemistry classroom.
The check showed that bromine got on the linoleum with cracks in it so the chemical went deeper – when the rescuers lifted up the linoleum they saw that bromine was evaporating from wooden planks. The rescuers removed some 2 sq. meters of linoleum with neutralized bromine on it and then treated the wooden floor to get rid of volatile bromine. After the operation was finished they opened all the windows in the building to eliminate any threat to human health.
“I can say that the school administration and staff acted confidently and absolutely correctly. The principal and the chemistry teacher indicated the place, volume and composition of the spilt liquid this is why we were able to neutralize it very quickly,” said Vyacheslav Safonov, chief of the Dangerous Chemicals Team of the Emergency Ministry’s V.A. Polyakov Rescue Unit.
Incidents in public buildings can happen at any time. This is why along with preventive work, heads of organizations have to pay special attention to preparedness of the staff to act in case of emergency. This incident at the Sakhalin school shows that quick and competent actions of the staff prevented threat to human health or lives.