Roughly 400 students were evacuated from Leonardo Da Vinci High School after an unknown substance was released in a second-floor bathroom.
The school is located on Porter Ave. in Buffalo, within the D’Youville College campus.
Initially, the substance was thought to be pepper spray, but Buffalo school officials are calling it “an unknown substance.”
It is not clear who released the substance.
Four doctors and Erie County SMART (Specialized Medical Assistance Response Team) responded.
Following the incident, officials say 16 people complained of symptoms related to the spray. All were medically cleared and did not need hospitalization.
The students were taken across the street to D’Youville College’s Madonna Hall.
Students will be given lunch there while fire officials clear the school building. After they do this, students will be able to collect their belongings.
School will remain canceled for the rest of the day. Students can be picked up across the street at Madonna Hall, or finish the day and take a bus home from there.
The Buffalo School District released a statement Friday afternoon, saying:
All Buffalo Fire Department staff, Buffalo Police Department staff, D’Youville College leadership, Buffalo Public Schools administration, our BPS School Safety and Security team, students and staff, nurses and nursing directors, food service, and especially teachers are to be commended for their extraordinary response at DaVinci High School today. Safety protocol was followed both during and after the evacuation of the school, due to the deployment of a noxious substance in or near a second-floor bathroom.
The statement also added that authorities are speaking with a person of interest in the incident, and that they are checking video footage.
The school has been declared safe and will resume on Monday.