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NCJ Number: 201389 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Suspicious White Powder: Center for Domestic Preparedness Develops Inexpensive Field Test for Ruling Out Anthrax Spores
Journal: Homeland First Response  Volume:1  Issue:3  Dated:July-August 2003  Pages:26-31
Corporate Author: US Dept of Justice, Office of Justice Programs
Office for Domestic Preparedness
United States of America
Date Published: July 2003
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: US Dept of Justice, Office of Justice Programs
Washington, DC 20531
Type: Instructional Material
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A Working Group hosted by the U.S. Justice Department's Center for Domestic Preparedness developed and explains in this article the features of an inexpensive field test for ruling out the presence of anthrax spores in a suspect letter or package.
Abstract: The Working Group was composed of experienced members from the science community and senior practitioners from the fire service, law enforcement, emergency medical, hazardous materials, and responder-education fields. The Working Group proposes a five-step process that can be completed in a few minutes with the use of inexpensive equipment and materials. The test is designed to assess in the field particle size, solubility, pH, and protein content, all of which are variables that can characterize the nature of a dry material found in a suspect letter or parcel. The equipment required includes a small clean vial with leak-proof cap (a 3 ml glass or borosilicate vial can be purchased at a medical or laboratory supply store for less than $2.00); pH paper test strips; protein test strips; a small disposable spatula or scoop; distilled water; and a magnifying glass (10 or 20x). The five steps described -- sample, shake, water, pH test, protein test -- can provide the typical American community an acceptable rule-out capability at very low cost. Responder units should have the equipment necessary for and the training to conduct the field test described. 3 tables and 3 references
Main Term(s): Domestic Preparedness
Index Term(s): Anthrax; Biological weapons; Police emergency planning; Police emergency procedures; Police equipment; Terrorist weapons; Testing and measurement
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