Police search for vial of toxic potassium cyanide removed from U - KULR8.com | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Police search for vial of toxic potassium cyanide removed from UM lab

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The Missoula Police Department and the University of Montana Police Department are investigating the report of a small amount of a toxic substance which was removed from a university research laboratory.

Missoula Police Public Information Officer Travis Welsh says that the material is a white powder called potassium cyanide.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, potassium cyanide can release hydrogen cyanide gas, which is a highly toxic chemical asphyxiant that interferes with the body's ability to use oxygen. The CDC states that exposure to potassium cyanide can be rapidly fatal.

Welsh says that the substance occupies less than half the volume of a clear glass vial with a white lid. 

He adds that it was possibly discarded in the area somewhere within the confines of Orange Street to Hickory and Craig Lane to S. 6th Street W.

At this time, it is not certain if the vial was discarded. But if it was, it could be in this area. 

Welsh says that officers have checked the area, but did not locate the vial.

As a precaution, law enforcement wants to alert residents and those who may be in the area. 

If located, contact 911 immediately and do not handle it.

This is an ongoing joint investigation by the Missoula and UM Police Departments.

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