An unknown substance is currently being tested after being found in the public lobby of the Ames Police Department.
According to an Ames PD spokesperson, a response was made at approximately 5:00 p.m. Sunday after several police officers noted a “chemical smell” in the lobby. In addition, one officer reported feeling dizzy.
Ames PD initially sent out an alert via its Facebook page at 6:13 p.m. to notify the public that all 911 calls would be automatically transferred to the Story County Sheriff’s Office due to the investigation. An “all clear” was later announced in an update.
In a Monday morning press release, authorities confirmed that the Ames Fire Department Haz Mat Team, along with Haz Mat specials based in Des Moines, responded to the scene Sunday evening and conducted “air monitoring and surface testing”. According to the release, no concerns were identified.
The “items” reportedly left in the public lobby were removed and have been sent for “additional testing”, per the release.
Ames Fire Chief Rich Higgins confirmed that no serious injuries resulted from the incident, thanks to the response of multiple response crews. “This situation ended without incident and serves as an example of how we always follow protocol when responding to concerns,” he explained. “We are fortunate to have our own Haz Mat Team as well as great partners and expertise at other agencies to assist.”
Two Ames PD employees were sent to Mary Greeley Medical Center for evaluation “out of an abundance of caution”, stated the spokesperson. They were later released.