St. John's street appears normal after drug lab found

Albany Street in St. John's appears to be back to normal Saturday after the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary said they discovered chemicals used for drug manufacturing located in a west-end home Friday.

Saturday afternoon there is almost no sign of the busy scene that was underway on Albany Street Friday night. No police tape remains.

Residents who were evacuated yesterday returned home Saturday morning.

The RNC have released no further information.

Heidi Coombs-Thorne, who lives next door to the house that was searched, said she was home at lunch time on Friday when a police officer came to her door, and asked her to leave the area.

"He said, we're having a bit of an issue with the house next door. There may be highly explosive materials. Would you be able to evacuate the house?, so I grabbed my purse and left the house. Just like that," she said.

Coombs-Thorne said she wasn't that alarmed about it at first, but when she returned later, and wasn't allowed back on to the street she became concerned. She said the information police shared with her was very limited.

"It was stressful afterwards just not knowing what was going on with that house," she said. "All I knew it some kind of highly explosive material."

She said she believes evacuees who had no where to go, stayed at the Mews Community Centre.

Coombs-Thorne said she spent the night with her husband and one-year old baby in the home of a relative.

She said she called the police Saturday morning and was told she could return home.

"It's such a contrast from yesterday because there were so many police here yesterday, everywhere."

"We came today and everything was back to normal."

On Albany Street Friday night RNC Constable Talia Murphy said about 26 homes in the area were affected by the evacuation.

"They have to continue their search of the residence to determine if there are any more chemicals located in the residence. There had been a large quantity of hazardous chemicals located in the residence which were consistant with the manufacturing of drugs," said Murphy.

"As a result they are going to continue the search until the whole residence has been searched thoroughly to determine what, if any, chemicals remain in the house."

She said there were members from the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary, the RCMP, the St. John's Fire Department, and Eastern Health on the scene.

Murphy said the air quality was tested and that it was non-explosive, and that the police were in consulation with a Health Canada chemist in Montreal.

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