Scare prompts lockdown at St. Luke's Cornwall Hospital in Orange County
An Orange County hospital was briefly put on lockdown Sunday over concerns about a patient who had recently traveled abroad.
St. Luke's Cornwall Hospital was put on lockdown for 2 1/2 hours as police and hazmat teams responded to reports of an ER patient who had unusual symptoms after traveling overseas.
Police say the unidentified 64-year-old male patient had just returned to the states from Rome and exhibited upper respiratory trouble. They say the patient came in sick, after reporting he was in contact with a powder found inside a book he purchased overseas.
The hospital went into lockdown at around 11 a.m. with 22 people inside. It was later determined that there was no threat, and the emergency room was reopened.
There is no word on the patient's condition, but activity is back to normal at the hospital.
News 12 has learned that the powdery substance was determined to be flour. Police say the FBI is continuing to test the powder.
The incident comes as concerns grow about the Ebola outbreak that has killed more than 700 in West Africa.
On Saturday, a U.S. doctor who contracted the often deadly virus abroad was flown to an Atlanta hospital for treatment, stoking concerns about bringing the virus to the states. A second U.S. health worker who contracted the virus will arrive in Georgia for treatment later this week.