WaterGAS Scandal

Kassie Araque, Reporter

It was a normal school day at Braswell High when Sully Martinez was sitting in the lecture hall first period. Martinez is involved in sports and is on the Varsity football team at the school. According to him, all players are required to carry a gallon of water at all times. He then noticed his bottle was empty and he went to the water fountain just across from the lecture hall to fill it up. It was only after he consumed half a gallon he noticed the water smelled odd. He said the stench smelled like gasoline.

“I thought I was just crazy until I passed it around to my friends and they said they smelled it too.”

He assumed it’d be no big deal until fifteen minutes later when he started feeling sick. Both an assistant principal and the school nurse, Zephaniah Smalley and Tami Carson, respectively, didn’t believe Martinez when he informed them of the situation, thinking it was just a stomach bug or the plastic of the gallon jug rather than the water itself.

“My vision got blurry, I felt nauseous and I felt like I couldn’t breathe,” Martinez recalled.

He was then rushed to the Baylor Emergency Medical Center. According to Martinez’s mother, Barbara, the doctor diagnosed him with a beginning of school stomach virus, dismissing their concerns and his symptoms which remained for another two days, causing him to miss school. He said the absence affected his work.

I do feel that the school district should have maintenance flush water lines across all campuses as a routine safeguard and test water quality and safety before each school year.” Barbara also told me.

However, Sully Martinez says the incident doesn’t change his opinion about the school and shouldn’t change anyone else’s. However, other students believe otherwise.

“It was a just wrong place, wrong time. Nothing more could have been done, gas isn’t usually in the water.” He said, now laughing about the topic. “My advice to others would be; watch out before you gulp down water.”

Meagan Biedinger, a student at the high school revealed her fear to me when asked about the topic. Multiple other students told me they did understand how something like that could happen, however that uncertainty doesn’t end at the student body. Assistant Principal, Laura Ice, also expressed her confusion on the subject when asked for an interview.

Junior Jose Moreno pointed out, “We have a million dollar school… We can afford to get our football players new locker rooms, new equipment, but we can’t afford clean water.”