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UPDATE: Fire chief: Pipe bombs found at the scene of an apparent explosion in East Chicago; postal worker injured

Police create a perimeter Wednesday night around a East Chicago post office, 901 E. Chicago Ave., after reports of an explosion that injured one postal worker. 

EAST CHICAGO — The FBI is leading an investigation into Wednesday's explosion inside a U.S. post office building that sent one postal worker to the hospital.

The female employee was transported to St. Catherine Hospital in East Chicago, according to FBI Special Agent Bob Ramsey. 

She suffered minor injuries according to an official on scene. 

Federal agents, along with local law enforcement and firefighters, were on scene at the federal building, 901 E. Chicago Ave., according to the city's fire chief, Anthony Serna.

A fire official at the scene confirmed there was at least one explosive device.

The Porter County's bomb squad was on scene with a bomb disposal robot. 

At least two bomb-sniffing dogs with the Lake County Sheriff's Department were on the scene as well.

The fire department received the call of a possible explosion at 5:59 p.m., Serna said. At least one employee was inside the building at the time of the explosion.

About 8:30 p.m., bomb squad officials could be seen huddled outside the post office building. As of press time, no official had yet entered the building.

Agents from the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were on the scene.

East Chicago Avenue between Melville Avenue and Huish Drive was closed to traffic during the investigation.

A police spokeswoman did not immediately return a call from The Times.


Northlake County Reporter

Lauren covers North Lake County government, breaking news, crime and environmental issues for The Times. She previously worked at The Herald-News in Joliet. She holds a master’s degree in Public Affairs Reporting.