July 27, 2005
Sixty children are resting in their homes tonight after a frightening night that led several of them at UVA Hospital.
Students from the Higher Achievement Program from Washington, D.C. were reported lost while on a hike on Observatory Hill. Today we found that the incident wasn't as bad as originally thought.
"I think the first thing that people would probably want to know is that these children were not lost," said, University of Virginia Spokesperson, Carol Wood.
At least 60 students from higher achievement program in Washington D.C. were on the UVA grounds for a 3-day college visit. After arriving at the university, the kids received room assignments and a tour of the university grounds before dinner.
"They were on their way to a 9:00 p.m. meeting at the McCormick Observatory and they were on a walk that was about 15 minutes from their dorm to the observatory," explained Wood.
The kids, ages 9-13, were separated into two groups by staff members and interns. The first group made its way to the observatory, but in the second group, one student complained about shortness of breath. That's when university police were called.
"Some kids were overheated, and one student was having breathing difficulties due to asthma," explained the EMT on the scene.
Nine students were taken to the emergency room. Five suffered from mild heat exhaustion and the asthmatics were treated. They were later released, with no injuries, and taken back to their dorm rooms on UVa grounds.
"Today all the students were back in the program and doing just fine," said Wood.
All the students' parents have been contacted since the incident. The Washington D.C.-based program has been very happy with what has been going on at the University of Virginia, and that next week a different group will participant in the same college visit.
The High Achievement students are set to return to Washington D.C. some time tomorrow.