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Suspicious Package Found And Destroyed

Hot Springs National Park

National Park News

On Memorial Day morning, security guards at the nearby Arlington Hotel called 911 to report a suspicious package in the park near the fountain on the Arlington lawn. Ranger David Van Nest was dispatched and arrived on scene moments later. He found HeHthethe suspicious package and evacuated the area. The package, wrapped in red duct tape, was placed at the foot of the water cascade. Assistance was brought in from the Hot Springs fire and police departments, the FBI, Little Rock Police Department and the Arkansas State Police bomb unit. A Little Rock bomb unit was brought in and the package was x-rayed. A water cannon was utilized to destroy the package after determining that this approach would be the safest way to neutralize it. The package turned out to be a hoax and the area was reopened to the public. While this incident was taking place, a "gawker" traveling down Central Avenue in front of the park ran into a large statue in the median, injuring several inside of the vehicle. This significantly added to the number of emergency personnel working the incident and further disrupted pedestrian and vehicular traffic in the area.  The park was reopened after midnight. Ranger Jeff Johnson was incident commander.


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