Student Killed In Machine Shop Explosion

BARRHAVEN, OTTAWA — A student at Mother Teresa High School was killed after an explosion in a campus automotive shop on May 26. Five other people — four students and a teacher — were also injured when a 55 gallon drum exploded in the shop.

Eric Leighton, 18, died in a hospital late Thursday night, hours after the incident, the Ottawa Citizen reports. He was reportedly cutting the drum for a project when it exploded. The drum contained peppermint oil residue, the vapors of which can ignite when mixed with air.

The school’s 1,400 students were evacuated to Longfields-Davidson Heights Secondary School after the explosion. The students waited in the gym until their parents arrived.

The day after the accident, the Ottawa police youth section, grief counselors and three school resource officers were stationed at Mother Teresa High School.

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