Emergency Procedures: Suspicious Packages

Suspicious Packages

  • A suspicious looking box, package, object, or container in or near your work area could be a bomb or explosive material. Do not handle or touch the object. Move to a safe area and call the University Police immediately at x5555. Use a telephone in a safe area. Do not operate any power switch, and do not activate the fire alarm.

Procedures

Identifying Suspicious Packages and Envelopes

Some characteristics of suspicious packages and envelopes include the following:

  • Inappropriate or unusual labeling
    • Excessive postage
    • Handwritten or poorly typed addresses
    • Misspellings of common words
    • Strange return address or no return address
    • Incorrect titles or title without a name
    • Not addressed to a specific person
    • Marked with restrictions, such as "Personal," "Confidential," or "Do not x-ray"
    • Marked with threatening language
    • Postmarked from a city or state that does not match the return address
  • Appearance
    • Powdery substance on the package or envelope
    • Oily stains, discolorations or odor
    • Lopsided or uneven envelopes
    • Excessive packaging material such as masking tape, string, etc.
  • Other Suspicious Signs
    • Excessive weight
    • Ticking sound
    • Protruding wires or aluminum foil

**If a package or envelope appears suspicious, DO NOT OPEN IT!

Handling Suspicious Packages or Envelopes

  • Do not shake or empty the contents of any suspicious package or envelope.
  • Do not carry the package or envelope, show it to others or allow others to examine it.
  • Put the package or envelope on a stable surface; do not sniff, touch, taste, or look closely at it or at any contents that may have spilled.
  • Alert others in the area about the suspicious package or envelope. Leave the area, close any doors and take action to prevent others from entering the area. If possible, shut off the ventilation system.
  • WASH hands with soap and water to prevent spreading potentially infectious material to face or skin.
  • Note any suspicious persons.