If you’ve ever thought to yourself that certain cleaning fluids and juices look similar, you have good company. A classroom assistant at a preschool in Oahu made the same error on November 27th. She mistakenly served Pine-Sol instead of apple juice to preschool students, one four-year-old and two five-year-olds.
The assistant worked at the Kilohana Methodist Church preschool in East Oahu. She was preparing snacks and apple juice in the kitchen, when in error, she picked up a bottle of Pine-Sol from a cart for cleaning supplies. She poured the cleaning fluid into three cups and served it to preschoolers. The three children drank small sips from the cup. Fortunately, a teacher helping in the classroom noticed that the liquid did not smell like apple juice. She immediately stopped the kids from drinking it and called emergency services.
The Pine-Sol had its original label on it, noted an inspector for the Hawaii Department of Health. The cleaning supplies cart also held a trash can and some other items, but no food. The assistant therefore must have grabbed the Pine-Sol bottle without really looking at it. Because of its similar color to apple juice, she served the cleaning fluid for snack time.
Emergency medical services arrived on the scene shortly afterwards and evaluated three preschoolers who had sipped the liquid. The students did not require treatment and were all fine.
The preschool notified parents of the incident via email. Kilohana Methodist Church preschool staff said the school would investigate the way it deals with snack time in an effort to ensure that nothing like this happens again in the future. The preschool also asserted that it will give mandatory training to its staff. The assistant who made the mixup no longer works for the preschool.