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Hawaii preschoolers served Pine-Sol instead of apple juice

Updated December 1, 2018 - 4:49 pm

HONOLULU — Three children took sips of the household cleaner Pine-Sol after a classroom assistant at a Honolulu preschool mistook the liquid for apple juice, officials said.

Paramedics were called to the Kilohana United Methodist Church Preschool to evaluate three girls, ages 4 and 5, on Tuesday morning, the Honolulu Emergency Services Department said.

They found no signs of trauma or sickness, and the girls’ parents declined to take them to the hospital.

The preschool sent out a letter to parents, saying the incident was “unfortunate” and that no children were injured.

“Only sips were taken before the lead teacher realized the liquid was not apple juice,” the preschool said. “The staff responded immediately by calling EMS and police. The children’s parents were immediately notified as well.”

The state Department of Health inspected the preschool afterward and found no code violations.

The assistant prepared snacks of crackers and juice as the classroom teacher attended to children at the restroom, according to the inspection report. The assistant picked up the container of yellow-brown liquid off a clean-up cart in the kitchen and poured it into cups.

The classroom teacher smelled that the liquid wasn’t apple juice and stopped students from drinking it, inspectors said in the report.

The report notes the cleaner was in its original container and properly labeled. The cart did not have any food items on it. All food was labeled and stored in kitchen cabinets, according to the report.

The preschool said it will be evaluating its process for obtaining snacks and refreshments to prevent any chance of this happening again. Staff will also undergo additional training.

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