ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Officials urge caution after new anthrax attacks

Duluth residents are being urged to call 911 if they have suspicions about packages received or unusual activity. Last week, Duluth city officials echoed President George W. Bush's recommendations to citizens as to what they can do to protect the...

Duluth residents are being urged to call 911 if they have suspicions about packages received or unusual activity.
Last week, Duluth city officials echoed President George W. Bush's recommendations to citizens as to what they can do to protect themselves from possible terrorist activities.
And in the wake of a new case of anthrax delivered by mail, the local warning follows a caution by U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft not to open suspicious mail.
Mayor Gary Doty acknowledged that people locally and nationwide have expressed concern about possible terrorist actions, including the introduction of biological agents such as anthrax. However, he noted that emergency officials have plans in place.
On Thursday in Cloquet, Gov. Jesse Ventura said Minnesota was as prepared as it could be for a biochemical terrorist attack. But he discounted the idea that the anthrax cases discovered so far were terrorist related.
"I certainly understand the concern of our citizens, and I find it reprehensible that terrorists have issued these new threats," Doty said. "However, we do have plans in place for citizens who have legitimate concerns and have responders whose job it is to help."
Fire chief Dan Haus is Duluth's city emergency manager. Haus said that response teams are in place if they are needed.
"The city of Duluth, the St. Louis County Health Department, the state of Minnesota and the federal government are well-versed in their response plans," Haus said. "The main message we want to get across to people is that if they have doubts or concerns, we are here to help them."
The Minnesota Department of Health has posted fact sheets about anthrax and other bioterrorism issues on its Web site at http://www.health.state.mn.us/ .
On Monday in Wisconsin, the governor's Task Force on Terrorism Preparedness published a guide of frequently asked questions to inform the public about terrorism. The guide is available at http://www.wisgov.state.wi.us/

What To Read Next
The system crashed earlier this month, grounding flights across the U.S.