Mulch fire smoke prompts evacuations at Coachella Valley schools; 14 students hospitalized

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THERMAL (CNS) - Fourteen students from Desert Mirage High School in the eastern Coachella Valley were taken to a hospital today with respiratory problems due to smoke from a nearby debris fire that has been burning since Monday, and the campus was evacuated along with two other schools. Desert Mirage High School, Las Palmitas Elementary School and Toro Canyon Middle School were evacuated around 9:45 a.m., and all classes were canceled for the day. Fire officials initially reported that Mecca Elementary School had also been evacuated, but later said that school was not affected. Cal Fire Riverside Capt. Fernando Herrera said Desert Mirage High School officials called 911 around 7:45 a.m., when 25 students complained of smoke-related health concerns. Of the 25 students, 14 were taken t
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