Fire Prevention & Protection, Firefighting, Hazmat

Boston Fire Department Office Evacuated After Suspicious Powder Found

The Boston Fire Department’s fire prevention division’s downtown office was closed for the rest of the day after being evacuated when an envelope containing a powdery substance was opened early this afternoon, reports The Boston Globe.

Firefighters responded to the fourth-floor office just after 1 p.m., Boston fire and Boston police said. The area where the envelope was opened was then isolated and the floor evacuated as crews shut off the building’s air system, department spokesman Steve MacDonald said in messages posted on Twitter.

He said all tests on the envelope with white powder had come back negative, but the envelope would be sent to the state lab for further testing.

An initial test of the area’s air quality by the Boston police hazmat unit just after 3 p.m. showed no sign of danger, prompting firefighters to downsize their response, MacDonald said.

People in the building’s five other floors were initially evacuated, though MacDonald expects they will be allowed back into the building around 4 p.m. The building also houses Boston’s parks and recreation department, public health commission, and inspectional services.

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