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White powder causes problems in Frederick

FREDERICK, Okla_There were some tense hours in the city of Frederick Wednesday. Authorities cordoned off the ambulance barn and called in Lawton's hazardous materials team. It all began when one of the workers at the ambulance barn opened up an envelope and out fell a religious card and some mysterious white powder. They reported it to the city's emergency management department across the street. Officials locked the building down and called in assistance.

We actually got to the scene just a few minutes after the hazmat crew did. They were still putting on their gear as we rolled up. Thankfully, it was a quick operation, but for the worker inside the building who found the envelope, it was a little tense. 

Yellow police tape surrounded the Tillman County ambulance building, with a strong police presence, making sure no one gets in or out. Inside is Sarah Morrison and five other employees told to stay put until Lawton's hazmat arrived to check out the white powder.

"We weren't sure what it was."

Morrison said she arrived at work this morning with this envelope addressed to the entire department sitting on her desk.

"We didn't think anything about it went to pick it up and a bunch of stuff fell out. I didn't know if it was outside or inside of it, we weren't sure."

It wasn't long before Lawton's hazmat team arrived. They put on gas masks and other protective gear and entered the building to take a closer look at the substance. Less than 15 minutes later they walked out. They gave the all clear to emergency crews who were anxiously waiting outside.

"The test was made and we did confirm that it was not a hazardous material."

Whoever addressed the envelope wrote it by hand and misspelled the word, "Frederick." They blotted it out with white out and re-wrote it.

"It dawned on us one of our other co-workers had scratched off that white-off and we realized it was more than likely just the white-off."

Despite the scene outside and mistaking whiteout for a hazardous substance, Morrison said she's glad it wasn't anything dangerous.

"It was better to be sure than sorry but we found out what it was."

Rector said another business received a similar envelope as well. Both have been handed over to a U.S. Postal Service representative from Oklahoma City.

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