A story that demonstrates the impact of role models in the lab...
Quebec school board must pay boy who had chemical substance poured over his head
LAVAL, Que. - A Montreal-area school board has been ordered to pay $15,000 to a student who had a corrosive substance poured over his head in a chemistry class.
The boy was 15 years old in February 2015 when a friend of his sprinkled some sodium hydroxide into his hair as a joke.
The compound can be found in products used to clear drains.
While the boy did not immediately feel anything, he later felt a burning sensation and decided to ease the pain with ice and snowflakes.
That exacerbated the situation because sodium hydroxide becomes corrosive when mixed with water.
The boy was treated in hospital every day for about six weeks and had to undergo plastic surgery. The judge's ruling said the chemical product reached his brain.
The teenager who put the powder on his friend's head testified he did not know his gesture was dangerous. He said he saw their teacher touch the substance and tell the class it felt funny.
The victim's parents sued the school where the incident occurred and the Commission scolaire de Laval school board.
Quebec court Judge Richard Landry ruled the safety guidelines concerning the use of sodium hydroxide were not as clear cut as suggested by the teacher.
In fact, Landry said the teacher trivialized the properties of the chemical product with his comment and his actions.
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