(Photo by Justin White)
WACO (June 19, 2012)--The Department of Public Safety and Texas Parks and Wildlife offices in Waco were evacuated Tuesday morning after a railroad worker found a suspicious device close to a nearby high-pressure natural gas line, but just after 2 p.m. the all clear was given and the building and the road were reopened.
Trooper D.L. Wilson, spokesman for DPS, said earlier Tuesday that the buildings were evacuated as a precaution.
A portion of Crest Drive from Interstate 35 and the Crest Drive exit off the highway were also closed.
Other entrances to the campus remained open as authorities checked the large flashlight that a railroad worker found at around 11:15 a.m. Tuesday.
The worker, who was trained to identify potential explosive devices, called Lacy Lakeview police after making the discovery.
DPS and TPWD employees were moved to locations on the nearby TSTC campus while authorities investigated.
Authorities didn’t immediately say whether the suspicious device posed any danger, but late Tuesday afternoon Wilson said in a text message that the object was simply a flashlight.
Wilson said the communications office in Waco was shut down and the dispatch function was temporarily shifted to the Dallas regional office.
The Waco communications office serves DPS personnel in 22 Central Texas counties.
The discovery came after what may have been an attempt to detonate an explosive device near an above ground natural gas line Sunday night in Plano
Police responding to a report of an explosion found a bloody man lying in the street near the pipeline.
Authorities say the man was carrying a device that exploded in his hands.
A house not far from the pipeline was searched overnight and a device was removed that was later detonated in Kaufman County.
The FBI is investigating that incident.