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At Least 22 Students Sickened At Lomita-Area School

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Almost two dozen pupils at a Lomita-area primary/middle school reported feeling sick to their stomachs for unknown reasons following lunch Thursday, and most of them were taken to hospitals to be evaluated, authorities said.

Students began vomiting and complaining of nausea and similar digestive distress at Audubon K-8 School on San Vicente Street about 12:30 p.m., according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.

Medics evaluated 22 youngsters -- in grades kindergarten through seventh -- and took 18 of them to trauma centers for checkups, though their conditions were not believed to be serious, SDFRD spokesman Maurice Luque said.

The other four were turned over to their parents.

Most of the children taken to hospitals were promptly released following their evaluations. It was unclear if any were admitted for longer-term care.

Campus food-service personnel and county health workers were looking over and testing the cafeteria fare served to the pupils today. The facility's refrigerators apparently were working properly, and no expired products were immediately found, said Jack Brandais, an information officer for San Diego Unified School District.

"Nothing is more important to us than the health of our students,'' he said. "We'll get to the bottom of this.''

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