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Suspicious White Powder Found at a Georgia IRS Office

A package containing the powder, which was found in the mailroom, was determined to be harmless.

By Henri Hollis, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (TNS)

Hazardous materials specialists from DeKalb County Fire Rescue investigated a suspicious package Monday afternoon at an IRS office in Chamblee, GA, officials said.

The package, which contained a white powdery substance, was determined to be harmless, DeKalb fire spokesman Capt. Jaeson Daniels said. Investigators tested the substance and found that it was sodium carbonate, also known as soda ash.

The package containing the powder was found in the mailroom of the IRS office on Buford Highway and immediately reported to emergency services, Daniels said. When firefighters arrived, the building had already been evacuated and the mailroom had been isolated by shutting doors and turning off the HVAC system.

Hazmat specialists entered the building and tested the substance, then declared the scene clear, Daniels said. Soda ash is chemically similar to baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate.

No injuries were reported.

Daniels did not share further information about the package, and it is not clear if a criminal investigation has been opened.

A Chamblee police spokeswoman said officers initially responded to the office building but turned the scene over to Federal Protective Services and the DeKalb fire crew.


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