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Suspicious package shuts down Public Safety office in Ottawa

In this file photo, RCMP cordon off a crime scene using police tape


Ottawa police are investigating after a suspicious package was found in the downtown building that houses the federal government's Public Safety department Thursday morning.

The package was found in the department's mailroom, which is on the 15 floor of the building at 269 Laurier Avenue West.

A spokesman from the Ottawa fire department said several people were isolated as a precaution but no one appears to be ill or injured.

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"There's no symptoms, everybody's fine," said Marc Messier. "So we're just going through the motions of just confirming that the package is safe."

Mr. Messier said seven people were isolated after coming into contact with the package. Three are workers in the building, one is a police officer and three are firefighters, he said. He said the suspicious substance was found in what may have been a small "baggie" but could not say what it contained.

The 15th  floor of the building was cordoned off and between 40 and 50 people on that floor were asked to remain there as a precaution while the investigation continues, Mr. Messier said.

The call came in to police around 9:40 a.m. on Thursday, Staff Sergeant Gina Rosa said. The hazardous materials unit and bomb squad were called to the scene along with police, paramedics and the fire department, she said.

Police closed off Laurier Avenue West between Bank and O'Connor Streets on Thursday morning and asked drivers to use alternative routes.

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About the Author
Parliamentary reporter

Kim Mackrael has been a reporter for The Globe and Mail since 2011. She joined the Ottawa bureau Sept. 2012. More


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