China school reports alarming symptoms from track

World Today

Xinhua Picture

After a dozen cases of nose bleeding, dizziness and rashes started popping up among students at a primary school, it started to seem likely that the smelly new rubber race track was the reason.

The government in East China’s Jiangsu Province ordered an examination of all of these types of rubber tracks in primary and middle schools, to look out for possible harmful substances.

The track in the primary school which seemed to first cause the health alarms has been removed and the local government in Jiangsu.

Du Wei, an official from the Education Department of Jiangsu provincial government, said it was probably an isolated case. “The track in question was built by the school after they raised funds on their own. Many other schools also built tracks but no complaints were filed,” said Du.

The official from the Education Department in Jiangsu also mentioned that the government and schools have been improving sports facilities for students in recent years. Since 2012, a total of 552 plastic play fields have been built and 113 are currently under construction.

Plastic tracks are popular in Chinese schools because they offer a softer surface than pavement helping to reduce the chances of injury during exercise.

Compiled with info from Xinhua