Home Emergency Management News EDM Wednesday Briefing: Suspicious Package Prompts Evacuation of Time Warner Center

EDM Wednesday Briefing: Suspicious Package Prompts Evacuation of Time Warner Center


Emergency and disaster management briefing for October 24, 2018: The Time Warner Center office building was evacuated early Wednesday after a suspicious package was received, Florida officials eye early November for power restoration in areas devastated by Hurricane Michael, six pediatric patients have died from a virus outbreak in New Jersey, a man breaking into the Fox 5 news station in Washington was shot by a security guard, suspicious packages meant for the Clinton's and the Obama's have been intercepted by the Secret Service, a three-day strike at University of California medical centers by medical workers caused thousands of surgery cancellations, 2.5 million pounds of taquitos recalled over concerns of salmonella and listeria contamination, Hurricane Will slammed into Mexico as a powerful Category 3 storm, and a landmark church in Wakefield, Massachusetts is destroyed by fire.

  1. The Time Warner Center office building was evacuated Wednesday morning after a suspicious package was found in the mailroom. The New York City bomb squad was called in to inspect the package. The building is home to the CNN New York offices, and CNN president, Jeff Rucker, noted that as a precaution, other bureaus around the world were also being checked.  
  2. Officials in Florida have announced that their goal is to have power restored by early November to nearly all the accounts impacted by Hurricane Michael that are equipped to receive power. On October 10, Hurricane Michael slammed into Florida's Panhandle as a near Category 5 storm, packing winds of up to 155 mph, and a strong storm surge that completely destroyed homes and businesses. According to officials, the electrical infrastructure in Mexico Beach and other towns in Calhoun and Jackson counties required a complete rebuild, but only 47,700 accounts remain without power, which includes those residences and businesses that are too heavily damaged or destroyed to receive power. 
  3. Six pediatric patients are dead and another 12 were sickened following an outbreak of a deadly virus at a New Jersey rehabilitation facility. The Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation, in Haskell, reported the viral illnesses to the health department on October 9, and a team was sent twice to investigate the facility--where only minor hand washing deficiencies were found. The virus was identified as adenovirus 7, a strain that is associated with communal living, and the viral infection affected medically fragile children with severely compromised immune systems.  
  4. A man who kicked in the glass doors at the Fox 5 news station, WTTG, in Washington, DC, was shot by the security guard after he entered the building. The man, George Odemns, 38, reportedly had filed several lawsuits against various public figures and organizations, including the Murdoch Family Trust, and sent bizarre and rambling emails to WTTG on multiple occasions. Authorities believe the threat against the news station ended when the intruder was shot, but an investigation into the incident is ongoing.  
  5. A package that contained an explosive device that was left near the home of Bill and Hillary Clinton in Chappaqua, New York, was intercepted late Tuesday. The Secret Service reportedly also intercepted an explosive device meant for former President Obama in a routine screening of mail on Wednesday morning, but noted that neither recipients were at risk of receiving the packages. Allegedly, the device found at the Clinton's was similar to the device found on Monday at the home of George Soros.  
  6. Nearly 15,000 medical workers at five University of California medical centers began a three-day strike and were joined in sympathy by another 24,000 California union workers--ranging from truck drivers to cooks. Involved in the strike are pharmacy workers, radiology technicians, and respiratory therapists, and the medical centers chosen for the strike were located in Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco. The strike--which has forced the cancellation of thousands of surgeries and outpatient appointments--centers on a dispute over pay raises and job security which are allegedly being threatened by outsourcing.  
  7. Ruiz Food Products, Inc. has issued a recall of 2.5 million pounds of taquitos over concerns of potential salmonella and listeria contamination. The recall centers around onions used in the company's production of its beef and cheese taquitos, including, among others, their Buffalo Style Cooked Glazed Chicken Taquitos, under the Go-Go-brand. The impacted products were produced from July 1 through October 10, shipped to retailers nationwide, and should be thrown away or returned to retailers for a full refund.   
  8. Hurricane Willa slammed into the west coast of Mexico on Tuesday near the town of Isla del Bosque as a Category 3 storm, with winds of 120 mph and heavy rainfall that caused flooding and power outages. In Escuinapa, a seaside town nearby where the storm made landfall, a police spokeswoman said that the storm downed trees, power lines, street lamps, and walls. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) stated that Hurricane Willa is expected to weaken quickly as it moves further inland, but remains a threat for many areas because of flooding, flash floods, and landslides likely from heavy rainfall amounts.   
  9. A landmark church in Massachusetts caught fire and was largely destroyed Tuesday night after allegedly being struck by lightning. The Wakefield First Baptist Church is located in the center of Wakefield, a city only about 15 miles north of Boston, and is a landmark that is nearly 150 years old. The five-alarm fire was partially fought by firefighters in the midst of a thunderstorm, but no injuries were reported as a result of the devastating fire.  

Kimberly Arsenault Kimberly Arsenault serves as an intern at the Cleveland/Bradley County Emergency Management Agency where she works on plan revisions and special projects. Previously, Kimberly spent 15 years in commercial and business aviation. Her positions included station manager at the former Midwest Express Airlines, as well as corporate flight attendant, inflight manager, and charter flight coordinator. Kimberly currently holds a master's degree in emergency and disaster management from American Public University.