(FOX 11 / CNS) A water boiler exploded at Valley High School in Santa Ana today, leaving seven students with minor injuries, authorities said.
The explosion was reported about 7:35 a.m. at the high school at 1801 S. Greenville St., said Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Jon Muir. Firefighters arrived, thinking they were responding to a fire, and saw the aftermath of an explosion "with smoke, no flames and large amounts of water,'' Muir said.
When rescue workers first arrived, they did not encounter any injured students because the teens had walked to the campus nurse's office, said Santa Ana police Cpl. Anthony Bertagna.
Four of the seven students were taken to a hospital for precautionary reasons. They complained of ringing in their ears and one reported anxiety, Bertagna said.
The explosion happened near the school's gym and it "caused some significant structural damage to the building,'' Muir said. "It was a pretty good boom, but fortunately there were no kids in the (immediate) area.'' As a precautionary measure, the Orange County sheriff's bomb squad inspected the area, Muir said.
Deidra Powell, a spokeswoman for Santa Ana Unified School District, said classes were able to start as usual despite the explosion. Some students were arriving on campus when the boiler exploded, Powell said. Classes near the gym were relocated elsewhere on campus, she said.
Most of the damage was limited to the gym's locker room, Powell said.