Families may pursue legal action over school poisoning

by: Shae Rozzi Updated:

Students from Finch attended classes Tuesday at Kennedy Middle School.

ATLANTA - Families may be taking legal action in light of a carbon monoxide leak that sickened dozens at a southwest Atlanta school.

A lawyer, who requested anonymity, told Channel 2’s Shae Rozzi that she has been retained by five families following the incident at Finch Elementary School.

“We want to make sure that this does not happen again,” she told Rozzi over the phone.

About 50 students and staff got sick and went to area hospitals Monday. Fire investigators detected record high levels of carbon monoxide inside the school, blamed on a faulty boiler.

“Our kids could've died,” parent Antarneka Stephens told Rozzi.

While she is not one of the families seeking legal advice, she said she supports the parents who are. Stephens said she felt sick when she was inside the school last week and wonders how long the boiler had been leaking.

“I just felt like I was going to pass out. I couldn't breathe. My head was hurting so bad,” she said.
 
Meanwhile, Finch students have been attending classes at Kennedy Middle School while corrective measures are being taken at their school. A temporary boiler inside a trailer arrived at Finch Elementary on Wednesday. Crews spent the day hooking up hoses and pipes for the boiler to pump hot water and heat into the school.

By Wednesday afternoon, inspections were being conducted by a fire marshal and boiler inspector. A representative for the state insurance commissioner’s office told Rozzi that the inspections should be complete sometime Thursday morning. Once they’re finished, the school will be handed back over to the Atlanta Public Schools.

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