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UPDATED: Flu Blamed For Scare During Cheerleading Practice

Updated 09/22/11 - 1 p.m.

ALSIP, Ill. (STMW) -- Four cheerleaders who reported feeling ill during a practice at a south suburban elementary school were hospitalized Wednesday night.

At 7:25 p.m., Alsip Fire Dept. personnel responded to Lane Elementary School at 4600 W. 123rd St., where about 20 cheerleaders reported feeling ill inside the school gym where they were practicing, according to Alsip Fire Lt. Tom Styczynski.

The girls complained of dizziness, shortness of breath and flu-like symptoms so their coach moved the girls outside while firefighters checked the area for a carbon monoxide, natural gas or other noxious fumes. All levels were normal, according to Styczynski.

Paramedics checked the girls and the custodian on the scene and four of the children were taken to Metro South Medical Center in Blue Island and Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn. As of Thursday they've most likely been released, the lieutenant said.

No one else was in the building except for the adult custodian, who was not ill.

Styczynski said the flu has been going around and one student who had been there earlier had it and was released to her parents, he said.

"We believe when one stated they were ill, it started a domino effect,'' the lieutenant said. "There was no indication of anything (dangerous) in the building.''

Firefighters cleared the scene about 9:15 p.m. Initial dispatch reports that the incident occurred at the Village Hall were incorrect.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2010. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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