The hazmat team found no dangerous materials in the package.
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A hazardous materials team found no threat in a suspicious package sent to the police station.
The District 5 Hazmat Team responded to headquarters Wednesday morning shortly before 11 to investigate a FedEx-delivered package that contained a medical journal hinting of virus dissemination.
By noon, the team found the package was not a danger.
"Monday afternoon a package was delivered to the Pittsfield Police Department headquarters. It didn't cause any undue alarm but once the package had been opened, the staff realized there was some inconsistencies with the addresses — both the delivery address and the alleged address of the sender," Police Chief Michael Wynn said.
The package originated from what appears to be a fake address out of Colorado, according to police, and was addressed to a nonexistent receptionist with the Pittsfield Police Department.
The address for the Police Department was also wrong. Inside, responders found newspapers, periodicals and the medical journal. The concern was that it may contain a powered substance or virus, the chief said.
"Shoved in the bottom of the box was an excerpt from a medical journal on virus dissemination and transmission and given the climate and culture we are working in, we thought it merited the extra precaution," Wynn said.
The package sat in a vacant office in the station for two days before being examined. Wynn said because of that, the station was not evacuated.
"They found nothing so we never suspended operations," Wynn said.
The Fire Department hosts the hazmat team, which is staffed by firefighters from both North Adams and Pittsfield. The Pittsfield Fire Department also sent an engine company to the scene.
"The team is originally designed for hazmat response and, through the years, our role has evolved into handling these bio, nuclear and chemical possibilities," Fire Chief Robert Czerwinski said. "The team is well versed in these kinds of operations."
The team quickly examined the package on scene and found no reason for alarm. The team has a dedicated vehicle with a number of assets to investigate such a situation. The response was a Tier 1, which means limited resources were used for the examination.
"They were confident that nothing was in the package," Czerwinski said.