Bak­ing soda causes scare at Chattanooga food bank

Chattanooga Times Free Press - - OBITUARIES - STAFF RE­PORT

The Chattanooga Area Food Bank was evac­u­ated Tues­day af­ter three sus­pi­cious pack­ages con­tain­ing a white, pow­dery sub­stance were re­ceived there.

The pack­ages were ad­dressed to board mem­bers, said pres­i­dent and CEO Gina Crum­b­liss.

“When I opened one of them, a white pow­der spilled out and I saw a box la­beled ‘bak­ing soda,’” she said in a news re­lease. “We im­me­di­ately im­ple­mented our in­ter­nal safety and se­cu­rity pro­to­col and called the Chattanooga Po­lice Depart­ment to re­port the in­ci­dent.”

The Chattanooga po­lice and fire de­part­ments were there within min­utes, con­duct­ing a full evac­u­a­tion and in­ves­ti­ga­tion, ac­cord­ing to the re­lease. Chattanooga Fire Depart­ment haz­mat unit mem­bers tested the con­tents of all three pack­ages and con­firmed the sub­stance was 99.9 per­cent sodium bi­car­bon­ate, oth­er­wise known as bak­ing soda. The in­ci­dent was con­tained to the food bank’s front of­fices and at no time were the clients, vol­un­teers, staff, ware­house, food, or other in­ven­tory ex­posed or in dan­ger, the re­lease states.


A Chattanooga Fire Depart­ment haz­mat team re­sponds to a call about three sus­pi­cious pack­ages at the Greater Chattanooga Area Food Bank on Tues­day. A white pow­der found within the pack­ages tested pos­i­tively as bak­ing soda, ac­cord­ing to Chattanooga Fire Capt. Wadie Sut­tles.

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