INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Letters laced with Ricin have been sent to the President and New York City's mayor. Those letters were intercepted before reaching their intended targets.
And with recent white powder scares, members of public safety in Marion County are learning the best way to handle unknown liquids and powders. Last month, they responded to a white powder scare at Community North Hospital.
After nearly three years, Sgt. Ron Humbert with the Indianapolis Bomb Squad said a collaborative white powder response plan is in place. Humbert said The Indianapolis Bomb Squad, Marion County Health Department and Indianapolis Fire Department Hazmat team created the policy that makes the bomb squad lead investigator on hazmat incidents.
Wednesday, members from each agency took part in a training session at the Farm Bureau building housed at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.
"In the bomb world, things spike and get real busy but they bottom back out," Hubert said. "(We had) a white powder run a month ago at Community North Hospital. The policy is 99-percent ironed out. We are going to get this in place just in case it happens in Indianapolis."
Jeffrey Larmore, supervisor of the water quality and hazardous material management division of the Marion County Health Department, showed firefighters how to use an instrument to detect radioactive material. The device was reminiscent of a pager.
Larmore said it's perfect for big events held at Lucas Oil Stadium. If something is detected, the instrument vibrates without alerting the person carrying the threat.
"We may not have the same types of targets like the President or the mayor in New York but we do have folks here, elected officials, that someone may want to do harm to," Larmore said. "We have to be prepared to be able to respond effectively to these types of incidents.
Members of the bomb squad worked with a robot that is used to deactivate explosives and hazardous packages. The hope is that they will never have to use the tools in this room. But if they do, they are prepared.
When temperatures plummet this low, most people start worrying about frostbite or falling on ice. But there's also the hidden threat of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Police in Shelbyville are investigating nearly a dozen recent business burglaries.
There will be no federal assistance for tornado victims in Kokomo, but the State of Indiana will appeal that ruling from the federal government.