A little bag of white powder was a scary thing for this military base.
Lt. Col. Pascal Godbout told a media conference the powder was discovered in a clear plastic bag sitting by itself in the main-floor men's washroom in the L. Pitcher Building on the military base.
“Given the nature of our facilities, there are a series of procedures to follow when someone notices a suspicious package,” Godbout said.
He said only those who work in the L. Pitcher Building have access to the facilities.
Chris Cuthbertson, hazardous waste material technician for North Bay Fire and Emergency Services, said the hazardous materials team removed and tested the substance.
He said it was determined the powder was a common household item, though he did not say what it was.
“We use chemical agent monitors to test substances to determine if it can cause any harm to an individual by touch, inhalation, etc.,” he said. “Once there were no hits on the chemical monitors, it was deemed to be a neutral product.”
According to CFB North Bay, about 100 non-essential personnel in the building were evacuated. The building was under lockdown for about two hours after the bag was discovered.
“Personnel responded calmly and it was a good opportunity to validate our procedures,” Godbout said.
Cuthbertson said following the anthrax scares after 9/11, every call has to be treated as a worst-case scenario.