EATON TWP.Â – The hospitalization of more than 20 people taken from Midview High School during a Junior ROTC drill meet Saturday cannot be linked to anything inside the building and likely came from heat exhaustion, school officials said.
The school will remain open today for all classes, Midview Superintendent Howard Dulmage said.
School officials will continue to monitor carbon monoxide and air-quality levels throughout the week, but the word from the Lorain County Emergency Management Agency after a thorough sweep of the building Sunday is that the building is not a threat to anyone, Dulmage said.
“What it wasn`t was something to do with the building,” he said. “Our best guess is that the kids got overheated in the cramped quarters of the small gymnasium.”
About 400 students from high schools all over Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania had been marching and maneuvering in the school`s small gymnasium since about 8 a.m. Shortly before the last formation at 3:40 p.m., students began to drop to the floor.
Soon, others began complaining of lightheadedness and dizziness, prompting event organizers to call for emergency personnel.
In the end, 18 were taken to EMH Regional Medical Center and eight more to other area hospitals. Dulmage said all were treated in the emergency room and released a few hours later.
Midview High School is not air-conditioned and the gymnasium`s doors were open during the meet. However, about 400 students with their advisers and parents were crammed into the small room, making the temperature rise.
After marching in formation for hours in full ROTC uniforms, many just succumbed to the heat, according to officials.