UPDATED: Co-op HQ package “nothing suspicious”
Update: The suspicious package discovered at the Co-operative Headqarters in Manchester was a “false alarm”, it has now been confirmed by emergency services.
The fire service have now confirmed to the M.E.N that the substance was food starch and non suspicious.
Staff at the Co-op Headquarters in Manchester have been ordered to stay in the building by emergency services after it was reported a suspicious package had been found.
The building, located at 1 Angel Square in Manchester, houses hundreds of employees, with one saying that the emergency services haven’t given any information as to what is going on, but have ordered them to stay in the building. Employees outside of the building when the alarm was raised have gone to a nearby pub.
One employee said the package had been delivered to the seventh floor. Another worker told MEN: “We are on full lock-down. They are still trying to work out what is going on.”
A spokesman for Greater Manchester Police said:
We were called to 1, Angel Square at about 12.30pm today to reports of a suspicious package in the building.
No evacuation has taken place of the building and emergency services are in attendance. An investigation is ongoing.
Special Hazard Officer on scene
A spokesman for GMFRS says a specialist hazardous material officer is currently inside the building.
They said they were called to the scene just after 1pm to assist police and ambulance crews with an incident.
“We sent four vehicles and a number of officers. A specialist hazardous material officer is on scene.”
It was also reported that ‘white powder’ was delivered to the building
A spokesperson for Co-op said:
“A package has been delivered to Angel Square that contained some white powder. This package is securely isolated but upon police and fire brigade advice we have locked the building down.
The well-being of our colleagues is clearly our up-most priority and we are working with authorities who are advising us further on the correct action to take.”
Emergency Services on scene now
2 fire engines, 2 ambulances and a police car are reportedly on scene.
A spokesperson for North West Ambulance Service released a short statement:
“We sent a rapid response vehicle which remains on scene.”
Security stopping people from entering/leaving
One person tweeted: “All the emergency services are congregated around the delivery entrance at the back of the building whilst security are stopping anyone going in or out at the front entrance”.
Live updates to follow.