11 Apr 2012

Mystery substance found to be talcum powder

2:56 pm on 11 April 2012

Cordons have been lifted after a chemical scare in Gilmer Terrace behind Lambton Quay in central Wellington.

Emergency services converged there about 9.20am after an envelope containing a white powder was found at Whitcoulls.


An employee opened the envelope, spilling the powder over his hands.

A hazardous substance team wearing breathing apparatus was in attendance, as were members of a military bomb squad wearing bio-hazard gear.

They identified the substance as talcum powder - but not before a person and a member of the Fire Service were put through a decontamination process.

Police are taking the incident very seriously and intend to prosecute whoever is behind it.

Senior Sergeant Shannon Clifford said the Whitcoulls employee was shaken and will be offered counselling.