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Discovery of mercury in janitor's closet prompts school closure

December 18, 2009
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WOONSOCKET, RI — Students at Woonsocket Middle School are getting an unexpected three-day weekend after state and school officials agreed it is in everyone''s best interest to close the school as a precaution following a mercury spill, according to WLNE-TV.
According to the story, a small amount of mercury was discovered earlier in the week while a janitor''s closet was being cleaned out.
The spill was cleaned up, the area vented and the air was tested and deemed safe and within the acceptable range, the story stated.
A follow-up check yesterday found elevated — but still acceptable — levels of vapor in the closet, prompting the joint decision from the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, the Rhode Island Department of Health and the Rhode Island Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to close the school, the story noted.
Students and staff from Woonsocket Middle School are moving into two new buildings and today would have been the last day of classes in the current building, the story added.
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