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Classes resume following leak

School shuttered following incident

— Students and staff in the Oroville School District have returned to class after a chemistry lab gas leak shut down the school on Friday.

Classes were dismissed at 10:30 a.m. Friday the 13th.

The leak wasn’t major, but as a precaution the main valves were turned off and the building was aired out, Superintendent Steve Quick said.

The district had been having problems with the propane line for the last few weeks and thought the problem was solved, but the propane smell returned.

The problem was repaired Monday.

“We activated our emergency alert system for parents to let them know about it,” he said. “The system sent out emails, voice mails and text messages in both English and Spanish, and from all indications the system worked extremely well.”

Younger students who did not have someone at home to meet them were returned to the school, since the elementary school is in a separate building and was “completely safe,” Quick said.

Bus drivers were at the school within 15 minutes of the decision to cancel classes for the day. City Hall and the police department were notified, as was the Tonasket School District, with whom Oroville High School had basketball games that evening.

Those games went on as scheduled.

The lost instructional time won’t have to be made up, he said.

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