DINWIDDIE COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A Dinwiddie High School student who was severely injured in a classroom chemistry experiment gone wrong two weeks ago was released from the hospital Wednesday afternoon.
Jey Bryant, 17, was one of four students injured in the fire caused by the experiment on Oct. 12, three of whom had to be rushed to the hospital for treatment. A teacher was also taken to the hospital after the incident.
Jey, a senior at the school, was one of 19 students in a classroom watching their teacher perform a chemistry experiment in which methanol was being poured from an open, narrow-neck, one-gallon container, according to Dinwiddie County Fire. The methanol vapor at the bottle opening caused a phenomenon known as flame jetting, during which a large amount of the methanol was rapidly emitted from the bottle and caught on fire, the fire department explained.
Jey’s father previously told 8News that he received first, second and third-degree burns from the fire. After being taken to VCU Medical Center, Jey was intubated and spent nearly two weeks in the intensive care unit.
8News previously reported that several details given by the school district and the fire department about what happened in the chemistry classroom leading up to the fire contradict recommendations published by the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, an independent, federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical incidents.
On Wednesday, Oct. 26, Jey was released from the hospital and returned home to continue his recovery, but his family said he still has a long road ahead of him.
“He got to go home yesterday afternoon. Doctors said they were amazed at his progress and he has a long road as far as wound care and scarring reduction with follow ups at the burn unit outpatient clinic and physical therapy,” Chris Bryant, Jey’s father, told 8News Thursday morning.
Dinwiddie County Schools announced there will be a BBQ dinner fundraiser held to benefit the victims of the chemistry lab fire. Food options will include pulled pork, coleslaw, baked beans, macaroni and cheese, rolls and dessert, with dine-in and carry-out options available. The event will take place Saturday, Nov. 19 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets for the dinner will be $15, more information can be found by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.