Towel found in Metro Transit bus 'suspicious' package
A suspicious package found on a Metro Transit bus late Friday afternoon contained just a towel, according to Metro Transit.
The bus was cleared to resume service to its scheduled route just after 7 p.m. and Barrington Street was reopened to traffic and pedestrians.
Lori Patterson, spokeswoman for Metro Transit, told reporters at the scene that someone anonymously called police to inform them about a package on a bus, then hung up.
That's when Metro Transit alerted all of its drivers.
The CBC's Anjuli Patil spoke with Mike Smallwood, the driver of the bus — route #41 — who said a call came over Metro Transit's communications line looking for a package.
"Communications just called and then asked me to check my bus and I looked over my bus and found a package on it. I called them and told them."
He was then told to evacuate the bus.
"I thought someone lost something important, bag of money for all I knew, right?"
He said he didn't think it was so serious at first.
"They do a lot of calls over all the buses, just to look for certain things from time to time and I just happened to be lucky to find something silly, that's all."
Smallwood, a relatively new driver with Metro Transit, said even though it was a rather dramatic event, it didn't shake him up.
"They always preach safety and stuff like that and we always expect stuff like that. Personally it doesn't really both me," he said. "I've actually seen a lot weirder stuff on the bus than this."
Barrington Street was blocked between South Street and Morris Street.
Buildings in the area, including the W Suites Apartments and the popular Henry House pub, were evacuated.
"I was just on my way home from work over at the Second Cup and I'm trying to get into my apartment down the street," said Keara Macaloney.
"We were told that there was some sort of bomb threat or unidentified package just up the street from where I was, and that we had to head out of the restaurant," said Brett Auger.