Anthrax scare reveals more CDC lab safety problems
NEW YORK (AP) — Citing an anthrax scare and other safety problems, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday said it shut down two research labs and stopped shipping highly dangerous germs to other labs.
An incident at one of the closed Atlanta labs could have accidentally exposed workers in three labs to anthrax last month. A second, previously undisclosed problem earlier this year involved deadly bird flu.
The CDC also released a report that detailed three other incidents in the past decade in which mistakes or other problems caused potentially dangerous germs to be sent out. No lab worker or member of the public was sickened in any of the incidents, the CDC said.
The federal agency operates some of the world’s most advanced and most secure laboratories for the handling of deadly germs, and has enjoyed a reputation as a role model for that kind of work.