Authorities respond to reported suspicious package

94th CST members collect samples of the powdery substance found on a parcel in Talofofo. (Photo courtesy of GFD)

At 2:24 pm Monday, units from the Guam Fire Department (GFD), Guam Police Department (GPD), Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 5 (EODMUS5), and the Guam National Guard’s 94th CivilSupport Team (CST) responded to a reported suspicious package at a home on Taijeron Hill in Talofofo.

According to the reporting party, she had retrieved a parcel that was delivered to her mailbox. Upon opening the mailing envelope, she noticed a white powdery substance that caused slight irritation to her hands.

Upon arrival of the first engine company from the Talofofo Fire Station, the occupants of the home were evacuated to a nearby residence. GFD’s Hazardous Materials Team, EOD, and CST were also requested to assist in response efforts.

Working together, local and military agencies were able to safely conduct sampling operations and eventually determine the powdery substance was a fine, starch-rich powder, similar to cornstarch. It is unknown if or why the product was used for packaging and shipping.

At 6:27 pm, the all-clear was given to the residents of the home and all units returned to service.

“This is another prime example of our emergency response counterparts working hand in hand to ensure the safety of our island community. Thankfully, the substance was not harmful or dangerous, but safety precautions and the methodical approach to an unknown must always be observed,” stated Fire Chief Daniel Stone in a news release.

The Guam Fire Department reminds the community to always notify the proper authorities when encountering a suspicious package that may be potentially dangerous or harmful.

(GFD News Release)