A suspicious package brought danger to the people at an IRS building in downtown Kansas City, Missouri on Friday as it made several persons sick because of the ammonia-like smell it gave out.
Local officials said that around 10 people reported getting sick including vomiting and nausea just right after the package arrived at the large building’s mailroom on Friday morning.
Lucy Martinez, spokeswoman for the U.S.Department of Homeland Security said some people felt sick with “watery eyes”, while several people were evaluated and treated at hospitals. Two were brought and treated at St. Luke’s Hospital, where they were eventually declared to be in good condition.
Martinez would only say that the package was an envelope that smelled like ammonia. She would not venture to give further details. She did not clarify the contents of the envelope or where exactly it came from.
Martinez said the probe has been taken over by the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, a division of the IRS that probes fraud. The Federal Protective Services- tasked with responding to terrorism and criminal acts against U.S. government infrastructure- is also providing assistance to the investigation.
A hazardous materials team from the Kansas City Fire Department checked the package for gasses and fumes but did not discover anything before it was turned over to federal authorities.
Employees and other people were not evacuated from the building during the incident. Business returned to normal after about two hours after the incident started.