Trenton, NJ 08625-0360
November 19, 2001
T. DiFerdinando, Jr., MD, MPH
Further Information Contact:
Laura Otterbourg or Dennis McGowan
Following is a listing of environmental sampling tests conducted
by the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS),
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and crime
scene sampling by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) where
positive anthrax samples have been found.
Square; Rocky Hill; Jackson Main (at 915 Bennett's Mill Road);
and Trenton Station E (1137 Hamilton Avenue) Post Offices
CDC & FBI
and CDC collected 15 to 25 environmental samples on Nov. 3 from
each of the 49 post offices in Central New Jersey not previously
sampled that have their mail processed at the Hamilton Mail
Processing Facility. On Nov. 9, the department reported these
4 post offices each had 1 positive sample. Prior to cleaning,
the FBI collected approximately 15 additional samples in each
facility for testing. All four post offices, plus a post
office in Allentown where 1 sample was equivocal and was being
retested, were then cleaned in the areas where the samples were
collected. The Allentown sample tested negative for anthrax;
however, 2 FBI samples, collected Nov. 9 in Jackson and Trenton
Station E, came back positive. The Jackson sample was from an
area already cleaned and the Trenton sample area was cleaned
Nov 16. DHSS and CDC did not recommend the post offices
be closed, nor that employees take prophylactic antibiotics.
of today, the state laboratory has received more than 2,249
environmental samples (i.e. envelopes and packages), collected by
law enforcement agencies from across the state. Testing on 2,235
of those specimens has been completed and all are negative for anthrax.
The lab conducts culture tests on environmental samples and on clinical
samples that meet established testing protocols.
Department has a bioterrorism phone line at the Emergency Operations
Center at 609-538-6030 that is open between 8:00 a.m. and 11:00
p.m. Beginning Nov. 21, the new hours of operation will be between
8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. until further notice. Information is
also available on the website at www.state.nj.us/health.
date, the Emergency Operations Center has received more than 5,000
calls since Oct. 12, with 18% coming from physicians, hospitals
and other health care providers; 40% from law enforcement agencies;
and 42% from the general public.
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