On Campus

Two UOttawa students hurt in lunchroom explosion

24-year-old student was handling two "highly unstable" chemical compounds

The Ottawa Citizen is reporting that two University of Ottawa students are recovering after a minor chemical explosion at the school’s biosciences complex Wednesday afternoon.

Paramedics treated a 19-year-old woman for minor chemical burns to her hands and a 24-year-old man was treated for a cut to his face and chemical burns to his hands and face. According to the Citizen, his injuries are serious but he is currently in stable condition.

Ottawa fire District Chief Monty Malloy says it is his understanding that a student brought an experiment from the lab into the lunchroom area. “Whatever happened caused a minor explosion,” he says.

The explosion blew out a couple of windows and damage to the building is estimated at $500.

Acting paramedics team leader Jason St. Pierre said the man was handling two “highly unstable” dry chemical compounds — sodium-azide and cyanogen-bromide — when an accident that caused the explosion occurred .

An Ottawa fire hazardous materials team also arrived on-scene to check the building and decontaminate the people involved.