Caustic Spray Injures Students

Fourteen junior high school students being bused to East Los Angeles from Van Nuys suffered minor injuries to their eyes and faces when a pedestrian sprayed a caustic liquid through the windows of their school bus Wednesday afternoon, authorities said.

Wayne Snyder, a bus supervisor with the Los Angeles Unified School District, said the students were on their way home from Van Nuys Junior High School when an unknown amount of the liquid was sprayed into the bus near Clark Street and Van Nuys Boulevard.

The bus pulled to the side of Van Nuys Boulevard after several of the children began complaining of itching and burning in and around the eyes, Snyder said.

Fourteen of the 45 students on the bus were transported to five area hospitals by paramedics, Los Angeles City Fire Department spokesman Larry Ford said. Spokesmen at the hospitals said none of the students was admitted.


Sgt. Jeffrey Burgess of the school district’s police department said a 15-year-old continuation school student was arrested after the incident for investigation of assault with a caustic chemical.

Burgess said a spray canister containing an ammonia-based liquid similar to that used by mail carriers to ward off animal attacks was confiscated.