COLONIE – Three employees at the U.S. Postal Service’s processing and distribution facility on Karner Road needed medical treatment after they were exposed to a unknown powder that came from a package Sunday.

Emergency responders descended on the mail center after midnight Sunday after one of the workers said they became ill after being exposed, Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple said. News10 ABC reported that the first worker went to an urgent care facility for a rash. The postal service did not release specifics about the workers’ symptoms.

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Local hazmat teams did initial testing of the substance, and found it to be non-hazardous. But the substance was sent to the state’s Wadsworth Laboratory for further investigation.

All three people needed medical care but were not hospitalized.

“We have engaged a professional environmental abatement team to clean the impacted area using protocols that keep our employees and your mail safe,” read a statement Sunday released by the postal service. “Out of an abundance of caution, the building remains closed until that process is complete.”

Employees at the facility at 30 Karner Road are being asked to call the postal service’s emergency hotline number for updates about when they should report to work.

There was no public safety presence outside the distribution facility by about 9 a.m. Sunday morning. However, there was a pile of yellow hazmat trash bags that were full sitting outside a side door that is near the post office’s public lobby entrance.

The public lobby that has a post office boxes and a self-service kiosk was also closed Sunday.

Precautions taken in Albany did not extend to other postal facilities, which is a concern said Mid-Hudson American Postal Workers Union President Diana Cline, especially in Newburgh where the tainted mail ended up.

Workers in at the Newburgh facility were not instructed as to when or if to report to work, Cline said on Sunday night.

“No one there was notified,” Cline said. “People got to work on Sunday and there was the mail, taped off in a corner. If it contains some airborne contaminate, somebody could get sick. Nobody knew what to do because no one told them. We still don’t know.”

The Albany mail trucks also made stops in Hopewell Junction and Poughkeepsie. Cline said no one there was told either.

“It’s horrendous,” she said.

Original Post from timesunion