White powder scare in Woden

johnboy 27 February 2009 28

Smee has sent in this photo from Woden this morning after a white powder scare.

Five fire trucks?

It turned out to be powdered sugar.

And why is it we fear white powder more than other more lurid colours?

(Slideshow with more of the response below)


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28 Responses to White powder scare in Woden
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Americanberran Americanberran 3:52 pm 02 Mar 09

The ol’ white powder/sugar scare .. any diabetics survive the ordeal?

Special G Special G 7:53 am 28 Feb 09

There has been one incident world wide of white powdered anthrox being sent in the mail and that was by a military biochemist who had access to powdered anthrax in a secure laboratory. You can’t make this stuff (anthrax, ricin, etc) in a back yard people.

Realistically the threat of someone coming in contact with powdered anthrax is very low and treatable should you come in contact with it.

Perth Airport incident where the place got shut down for hours and ended up being baby powder in a baby change room.

So what should we be doing about white powder incidents? Spending thousands/millions of dollars on overreacting or throwing it in the bin. I’m tipping if we started doing the second then the people trying to cause chaos by sending the stuff would stop trying. or start prosecuting people under terrorist legislation for sending it?

DJ DJ 7:20 pm 27 Feb 09

Oh, and there is a vaccine that a lot of US military people refused to take in the Gulf wars

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthrax_vaccine

DJ DJ 7:19 pm 27 Feb 09

caf said :

“..the usual weapon of choice..” is a strange way to describe it. Exactly how many verified attacks on civilians with weaponised Anthrax have there been? I reckon you could count them on one hand.

One. USA. Sent to 12 addresses. His occupation was a biological science something….

bubzie bubzie 6:25 pm 27 Feb 09

ah, that explains why there were more pubes than normal walking around the shops this morning.
it’s all making sence now??

Primal Primal 6:14 pm 27 Feb 09

Is that what that was… I was at Aviation House at 8:30 and all I could see was one fire engine and a lot of other sirens nearby. Pity they couldn’t clear out a few other buildings just to be safe…

Qbn Gal Qbn Gal 3:44 pm 27 Feb 09

Woden must have been the place not to be this morning.There was an evacuation of Maternity at The canberra Hospital after the contractors drilling bore holes for the new Women and Childrens Hospital drilled straight into a gas line. So clever of them!

NoAddedMSG NoAddedMSG 1:14 pm 27 Feb 09

MsCheeky said :

I was going to suggest it may have been the hash house harriers, but we use flour, not sugar. Further explanation probably warranted. We use the hare and hounds concept of one person running ahead laying a trail for others to follow, and flour is often used, as its tree-hugging biodegradable. There have been many hazard alerts on flour trails, particularly in the good old US of A, where the flour has been thought to be powdered anthrax or cocaine. Leaves you wondering who would believe that someone would run around throwing handfuls of cocaine on the ground, but google it. It’s true.

Finally, an explaination for the white powder-based arrows I see around the place sometimes. All this time I thought it was the faerie folk leaving markers pointing to the way back home when they come out exploring at night.

caf caf 12:52 pm 27 Feb 09

“..the usual weapon of choice..” is a strange way to describe it. Exactly how many verified attacks on civilians with weaponised Anthrax have there been? I reckon you could count them on one hand.

jakez jakez 12:52 pm 27 Feb 09

I skimmed this headline and it registered as ‘White power scare in Woden’ in my brain.

PBO PBO 12:46 pm 27 Feb 09

Personally, I blame the cleaners for not doing their job properly.

Ags Ags 12:31 pm 27 Feb 09

Anthrax is the usual weapon of choice but cyanide, arsenic and ricen are some others.

The treat can come in several forms.
Biological virus attacks the body and can be deadly. Others can be toxic if inhaled (gases), injested (contaminated food or putting hands in the mouth) or touched and penetrated through the skin.

Spilling chemicals like glue or petrol can also overcome the body in the same way.
“white” powders is just a generic name. until assessed by HAZMAT

hellspice hellspice 12:27 pm 27 Feb 09

p1 said :

< and a pile of Cocaine someone has spilt on the ground is all about intent.

where would i find these piles ?

johnboy johnboy 11:47 am 27 Feb 09

Ags said :

You should google up what happens to the body when contaminated by white podwers. Not pretty.

*WHICH* white powders? There are many.

p1 p1 11:45 am 27 Feb 09

It can take hours to comfirm it as a hoax but the consequences of fobbing it off as “just flour” are too deadly.

I was not suggesting that these things be ignored, and I know that somewhere someone has to make a decision about policy on what is a threat.

The difference between something intentionally made to look threatening, and a pile of Cocaine someone has spilt on the ground is all about intent.

Ags Ags 11:39 am 27 Feb 09

PH has had many white powder scares. Most are sent in the mail but some have been found in the public areas. HAZMAT teams deployed onsite always treat each incident as real.
It can take hours to comfirm it as a hoax but the consequences of fobbing it off as “just flour” are too deadly. You should google up what happens to the body when contaminated by white podwers. Not pretty.

p1 p1 11:30 am 27 Feb 09
OzPhoenix OzPhoenix 11:15 am 27 Feb 09

There must also be a certain way you have to present the white powder for it to scare people, because if I saw some white powder lying around I really wouldn’t take much notice. Or is it simply I’m not paranoid enough?

So, when these people freak out over the white powder, are they purely reacting to some white powder lying on the ground or a bench top, or is it in an envelope in the mail?

MsCheeky MsCheeky 10:57 am 27 Feb 09

ilmarinen, google is your friend. Probably the easiest place to start is with Wact Hash, which has links to others, under ‘others’.

http://members.iinet.net.au/~richard.hewitt/wact/index2.html

I run with Canberra Hash, which is a small friendly group. The annual mayhem of the Tour de Pisse is on 14 March. Onya bike and join in. As we say, if you’ve got half a mind to hash, that’s all you need.

ilmarinen ilmarinen 10:50 am 27 Feb 09

So how does one find out what HHH get up to around Canberra?

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