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Harris County
Houston Independent School District
News Release
Monday, November 07, 2011

HISD, Houston Health Department Work to Identify Cause of Illnesses at Football Game

The Houston Independent School District today met with members of the City of Houston Health Department and contracted for the services of an industrial hygienist in an effort to determine the cause of an illness that affected 22 Austin High School students at a football game at Barnett Stadium (6800 Fairway), on Friday night.

The students complained of difficulty breathing, nausea, vomiting and various other symptoms following a half-time performance. Houston Emergency Services personnel evaluated and transported 22 students to who were taken to area hospitals, treated and released later Friday night. 

“The safety of our students is our top priority,” said Chief Operating Officer, Leo Bobadilla. “We want to ensure that every precaution is taken to prevent this from happening again.” 

Epidemiologists from the city will interview students and school officials to get information on the whereabouts of the band members within the stadium and collect other health related-factors that could have played a role in the event.

HISD has contracted for the services of Building Air Quality, Inc. to determine if there may have been a contributory source within the stadium.  The company will evaluate drainage systems, mechanical rooms, plumbing and electrical systems at Barnett Stadium.

Two UIL football playoff games are slated to take place at Barnett, this week.  The HISD Athletics Department will determine whether the games will remain at Barnett or be moved, by Wednesday morning.




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