Live wires downed due to a wind storm forced École North Oyster students to stay inside, leading to an extra long day of school Thursday. BLACK PRESS file photo

Children stuck late at North Oyster school due to downed power lines

Students weren’t allowed to leave until the evening yesterday

Live wires downed due to a wind storm forced École North Oyster students to stay inside, leading to an extra long day of school Thursday.

A weather system brought strong winds and caused damage across the Nanaimo and Ladysmith area, including falling trees, which took out some power lines near the Ladysmith-situated school around 3:30 p.m. yesterday, according to Andrew Scruton, a parent and North Oyster Volunteer Fire Department firefighter, who directed traffic during the incident.

Dale Burgos, Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools spokesman, said wires and trees were downed on each side of the road that surrounds the school, leading to safety concerns as no one could enter or exit the area.

“It got into the evening time where the remaining students that were in the school, were able to be picked up by parents, but again there was a procedure in place where emergency services personnel would escort just a number of parents at one time to the school, so they could pick up their child and escort them back safely to the … parking lot,” said Burgos.

While there wasn’t power in the school, Burgos said, there were plenty of lights, water, food and it was warm in the school.

Scruton said the children were allowed out around 6:30 p.m.

The children had an extended school day and it was for something that isn’t an everyday occurrence.

“They were fine,” said Scruton “They just thought it was exciting because they were very well taken care of in the school.”

RELATED: A dozen schools in Nanaimo-Ladysmith closed

RELATED: Winds whip up havoc across Nanaimo region

RELATED: More than 90,000 remain without power on Island

Burgos said the school district follows school closure protocol in incidents like this.

“That one in particular wasn’t something that, in my recollection, we had experienced. However, right away, what happens is when it’s not safe outside of the school, and that’s for let’s just say, wild animals, anything like that, we keep the kids and staff inside, and that would be like a ‘shelter in place’ situation … nobody inside is allowed to go out and nobody outside is allowed to go in and really that’s what it was,” said Burgos.

École North Oyster is closed today, along with 11 other schools in the Nanaimo-Ladysmith school district – busing is also cancelled.



reporter@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Infrastructure upgrades about to get underway on Bowen Road

Nighttime road work to start next Monday, June 8, between old Island Highway and Labieux Road

Resiliency program set up to help Island tourism through ‘grim’ times

Tourism Vancouver Island CEO says 23-25 per cent of tourism businesses may shut down permanently

Column: Vulnerability to global disasters is our own making

For many, needs of the moment take precedence over concerns about sustainability, notes columnist

House burns in Harewood, three people displaced

Dog unaccounted for after house fire Sunday evening

VIDEO: A Vancouver Island black bear takes weekend nap in eagle tree

Videos captured by Terry Eissfeldt shows the bear arriving Saturday night and sleeping in on Sunday

COVID-19 birthday drive-by celebrations snuffed out in Island community

Bylaw officer visit with threats of a fine mean parade trucks taken off the road

Vancouver Island Regional Libraries to offer ‘takeout’ style services

VIRL will offer the service on a branch-by-branch basis

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

George Floyd asphyxiated by sustained pressure: family autopsy

Death sparked a wave of protests across the U.S. and abroad

COVID-19: B.C. commercial landlords can’t evict if they decline rent assistance

Emergency order ‘incentive’ for federal program, Carole James says

B.C. Hockey League prepping for 2020-21

League reviewing different scenarios and start times in compliance with provincial regulations

Duncan’s Queen Margaret’s School pioneers thermal imaging in school reopening

Private school is first in B.C. to use new tech post-COVID-19

Most Read