Davie Jones elementary was evacuated briefly at lunch hour Thursday. (Contributed)

Strange substance on doors empties Pitt Meadows school at lunch hour

Students, staff treated at scene and sent home

Police and firefighters converged on to Davie Jones elementary in Pitt Meadows on Thursday morning around 11:30 a.m. after an irritant of some kind was put on an exterior door.

Some students and staff showed some skin irritation after touching the door and were treated by the fire department and sent home, said Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District spokesperson Irena Pochop.

No one was seriously injured.

“Some of the students had a reaction to it.”

Parents were notified via Facebook, Twitter and the school district’s website.

The students were evacuated from the school for about 90 minutes while the Pitt Meadows fire department inspected the school. Maple Ridge fire department’s hazmat team attended and washed down the door.

Pitt Meadows assistant fire chief Mike Larsson said between 12 and 18 students were affected and a few staff members after they complained of itchiness. But it was “very, very minor.”

B.C. Ambulance also attended.

Larsson is confident the substance was pepper spray that had dried since it had been sprayed on.

The department gave the all-clear and students headed back into class at about 2 p.m.

“If anyone has information as to how this noxious substance was on the door, we’d be happy to hear from you,” said Ridge Meadows RCMP Sgt. Brenda Gresiuk.

It’s not known exactly was on the door.

“From everything we could take from the scene, we suspect it to be a bear-spray type of irritant.”

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