CAPE CORAL, Fla. - Island Coast High school students took an OSHA certified training course in cleaning up oil contamination near beaches. The 87 environmental science students were already going to take a 24 hour course, but since the Deep Water Horizon spill, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration approved a new 4-hour course for those who want to volunteer for the gulf spill. In the span on one day, all 87 kids were certified.
"Our beaches are so clean and with this oil spill coming, how gross would it be..."said freshman Janessa Martinez.
Instructors partnered with the non-profit group Ostego Bay Oil Clean-Up Co-Op, who holds regular training sessions. This is the first given to high school students in Lee County. "It does give them the ability to sign up to volunteer and follow the directions of the on-site coordinator," said instructor Cherie Sukovich.
The program began with students unloading the familiar yellow booms like those currently used to contain the gulf spill. Students had to assemble and maneuver them around a particular area, then apply absorbent sheets to the surface. For the students it was a chance to lend a hand and perhaps recognize a harsh reality that may lie ahead.
"You can't just sit there and do nothing about it, you have to do it, you have to fix it, you have to find people who like it and do it affectively," said student Christina Munoz.