Fairfax, VA – A white powder was found in the U.S. Senate Dirksen building in Washington, D.C. Monday afternoon, Feb. 2. The Washington Post is reporting that six of the first eight tests conducted show the substance could be ricin and that it was delivered through the U.S. Mail.
In light of this discovery, the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) is aware U.S fire chiefs may receive similar calls or contact from the media concerning the protocol for responding to potential biological or chemical threats. The IAFC has developed “Model Procedures for Responding to a Package with Suspicion of a Biological Threat.” This standard operating guideline provides:
- A decision matrix for managing a package with a suspicious substance
- Identifying and assessing biological threats
- Responder procedures
- Decontamination guidelines and a number of resources on equipment and
- biological detection methods and a list of additional resources
For further information and to download the “Model Procedures for Responding to a Package with Suspicion of a Biological Threat,” go to: www.iafc.org. Information will appear on the home page.