New Brunswick

Suspicious package found at Bathurst arena not a threat, police say

Police have cleared the K.C. Irving Regional Center in Bathurst after the arena was evacuated Thursday morning when a suspicious item was found by staff.

Police left scene shortly before 7 p.m. after about six hours on scene

Workers stand outside the K.C. Irving Regional Center in Bathurst on Thursday after the arena was evacuated when a suspicious package was discovered. (Radio-Canada)

Police have cleared the K.C. Irving Regional Center in Bathurst after the arena was evacuated Thursday when a suspicious item was found by staff.

City spokesperson Luc Foulem said an item was left in the building, but it posed no risk to public health.

Police left the scene shortly before 7 p.m. after about six hours on scene.

Foulem said it was a member of the cleaning staff who discovered a package that looked and sounded suspicious, Foulem said, adding it vibrated and made noises.

The appropriate steps were to communicate with the police force, he said.

Bathurst police were dispatched to the scene, evacuated the building and established a large security perimeter around the complex. Four fire trucks were also on site.

The building remained closed for several hours. The RCMP's explosive disposal response unit inspected the scene and determined there was no threat.

Foulem did not reveal the exact nature of the object, saying the investigation was continuing.

He said the incident is not related to the NHL exhibition game between the Montreal Canadiens and the Florida Panthers, which was held Wednesday night at the arena.

Nor is it tied to Acadie-Bathurst Titan's season-opening match on Friday, he said, adding the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League game remains on schedule.