Federal office closed down

By Dick Mason, The Observer June 18, 2014 10:38 am

Powdery substance received in mail at La Grande’s Social Security office

The La Grande Social Security office building, 2205 Cove Ave., was evacuated Tuesday afternoon after a suspicious powdery substance, later determined to be harmless, was found. 

The Social Security office had received the substance in the mail.


The suspicious item was reported to the La Grande Police Department at 2:27 p.m. 

The police and La Grande Fire Chief Bruce Weimer then arrived at the scene. The individual who had been exposed to the material, a Social Security office employee, remained in the building to prevent him from possibly spreading the suspicious substance, Weimer said.

Public safety officials then talked to the individual to determine if he was suffering any symptoms from exposure to the substance.

“We were talking to him on a cellphone,” Weimer said. “He told us that once he was exposed to the material he covered it up and washed himself.”

Fortunately, the individual did not report suffering any symptoms.

For the full story, see Wednesday's issue of The Observer