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School closed after dozens collapse from norovirus infection

The Local · 25 Jan 2011, 14:28

Published: 25 Jan 2011 14:28 GMT+01:00

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The students were in sports class at the Weißeritz high school reportedly suffered acute circulatory problems in the morning. Some 16 were treated in the hospital, while another 20 received ambulatory treatment.

Police in the Saxon community said at first they were baffled as to what could have affected the students so severely, speculating that there could have been a noxious substance circulating through the air.

But after air tests revealed no clues, and more students later collapsed in a neighbouring classroom, a district office spokeswoman said authorities had assumed the students had become infected with a norovirus.

By that time more than 70 students had reported symptoms of the highly-contagious bug, which causes sudden nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea.

The norovirus is the most common cause of gastroenteritis around the world and can be transmitted easily through contact with an infected person, by consuming contaminated food or water or by coming into contact with contaminated surfaces or objects.

Meanwhile in Hamburg on Tuesday, nine toddlers were rushed to a hospital on suspicion of food poisoning after eating tomato soup for lunch at their day care centre.

But according the first assessment by doctors they likely suffered an allergic reaction to too much flavour enhancer added to the dish by a catering service, a fire department spokesperson said.

Story continues below…

Their symptoms included redness and swelling in the face.


The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

15:34 January 25, 2011 by Kayak
What's with the poor quality of German food?

First it's industrial oils added to animal feed (one of us blamed THAT on the Old-World baddie called "Globalisation" ha-ha!!) and now it's school-lunches making BOTH younger and older ***German*** children sick!

Can someone blame genetic-engineering, globalisation or Google for THAT? C'mon!
15:41 January 25, 2011 by yhsanjay
The matter is very serious and the health department authorities need to take note and adopt corrective measures.

With the children being affected, this needs all the seriousness and action from all concerned.

Makes sad reading!
15:52 January 25, 2011 by heathen
Perhaps someone left a window open...es zieht!
23:14 January 25, 2011 by rfwilson

"health department authorities need to take note and adopt corrective measures"

What corrective measures??? Some kid probably came to school infected with this virus, and it spread from there. What "corrective measures" do you expect the government to take?.... monitor each child for viruses when he enters the school yard every day? Let's not overreact!
02:55 January 26, 2011 by cklb
@ Kayak: the good thing in Germany is that stuff like that is actually noticed. Even so it somewhat brings the wrong effect, since the media makes a huge deal out of some black sheep...
11:03 January 26, 2011 by loz_adele
haha @ heathen

But seriously, I had norovirus at Christmas one year and it's truly horrible. Hope they all get well soon! (and please don't let it spread over here..)
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