White powder scare leads to hazmat response in Meriden

MERIDEN — A white powder scare briefly shut down a city business park this afternoon.

Police responded to the area of 500 South Main Street early Friday afternoon. Three mail room employees working at a company in the Meriden Business Park complex opened a package containing an unknown white powder. The workers quickly contacted Meriden Police after coming into contact with the substance.

Emergency crews from Meriden Fire and DEEP arrived on-scene, along with investigators from the FBI and Connecticut State Police. Employees and patrons at other businesses in the park were asked to shelter in-place while a hazmat team swept the building.

They eventually located the mail room containing the white powder and brought it to their mobile laboratory for testing. After a few minutes, they determined the substance was comprised of completely inert chemicals.

The three individuals from the mail room were evaluated. After displaying no signs of illness or discomfort, they were subsequently released.

This is the latest in a series of copycat incidents where white powder was distributed to public buildings and businesses throughout Connecticut, including one just a few hours earlier Friday at a Groton mosque. All packages tested so far have tested negative for dangerous chemicals.

Detectives are pushing forward with a criminal investigation with assistance from state FBI officials.

Meriden Business Park