In the wake of school students falling ill using the sports facilities seemingly built using industrial waste, the Chinese authorities are mulling over removing the substandard running tracks in schools.
The Ministry of Education, which called the recent incidents "poisoned running track" cases, said environmental protection and quality watchdogs would inspect newly-built synthetic tracks and order ones that didn`t meet safety standards to be removed.
The move comes after incidents at schools in Beijing, Jiangsu, Guangdong and other provinces, where children suffered nosebleeds, dizzy spells and coughing after using the tracks, raising safety fears about the materials used to build them.
"The Education Ministry is taking the recent spate of 'poisoned track' cases on campuses in a number of locations very seriously," the ministry said in a statement late on Wednesday.
State-run media has previously reported that some of the substandard running tracks were made using industrial waste including scrap car tyres, wires and cables.
Meanwhile, the Ministry added it would raise oversight of officials and school personnel involved in the construction of school running tracks and sports stadiums.
"People in positions of responsibility, whose negligence leads to sporting facilities falling below quality standards or even being 'toxic', will face resolute and serious punishment without mercy."