TOMS RIVER – A Township Rite Aid was evacuated earlier today after a suspicious package caused a scare at the store.
Toms River Police Department Spokesperson Jillian Messina confirmed a white powdery substance was inside the package leading to the evacuation of the store on Route 37 East near Vaughn Avenue at around 1:40 p.m.
Messina said “upon arrival, employees advised the responding officers that they opened up a mail package that was delivered to the store and located a newspaper inside.”
According to a press release from the department, the employees stated that they believed that they may have been exposed to an unknown powder like substance that was either on the newspaper or inside the box.”
A hazmat team was brought in to help with the investigation which centered around the pharmacy department.
Messina added that police and firefighters were also called to the scene.
Two Rite Aid employees were transported to Community Medical Center as a precaution.
Preliminary inspection of the package by the New Jersey State Police HAZMAT Unit and the Berkeley Township HAZMAT Unit deemed the package to be safe.
Ocean County Scanner News was the first to report the incident.