News


Police investigate bomb threat at HP

Investigation involving K9 units expected to last through the evening

Palo Alto police officers keep a driveway to Hewlett-Packard closed to traffic at Page Mill and Peter Coutts roads as an investigation into a bomb threat at the company is underway on Oct. 11, 2017. Photo by Veronica Weber.

Police don't believe a bomb threat at Hewlett Packard's offices that forced employees to stay inside in Palo Alto Wednesday afternoon is credible, but continued to search the building into the evening, a spokesman said.

Around 2:50 p.m., Palo Alto police dispatch took a call from a person who made a bomb threat targeting HP, police Capt. Zach Perron said.

Police quickly contacted the company's security personnel, who were unaware of the threat and worked with responding officers to search the Hewlett Packard Enterprise site at 3000 Hanover St., Perron said.

The company decided to keep their employees inside until the search outside was completed, Perron said.

Multiple search teams canvassed the parking lots and vehicles sitting outside to make sure there were no suspicious devices or people, Perron said.

The building was secure and no one was evacuated, according to police. Two police cars were seen outside one of HP.

As a precaution, Page Mill Road was blocked between Hanover Street and Peter Coutts Road from about 3:30 p.m. until 4:45 p.m., police said on Twitter.

Police determined the call lacked credibility but will continue searching for anything suspicious in the now-empty building with four bomb-sniffing dogs, one from Stanford University's Department of Public Safety and three from the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office, that will last into the evening, Perron said.

HP employees told the Weekly they were given little information about the investigation but were allowed to leave once the all-clear was given.

The company's crisis management team told employees to remain indoors during the investigation, according to one employee in his 20s who declined to give his name.

No additional buildings were affected by the threat, according to police.

The entrance to HP Enterprise's offices at Peter Coutts Road and security gate remained closed shortly before 5:30 p.m.

William Mead, a limo driver for Lux Bus America, was waiting outside the company's offices for more than an hour to pick up a group of people visiting from Denmark he had dropped off in the morning.

Stanford University journalism professor Cheryl Phillips was biking home around 3:30 p.m. when she saw two police officers blocking Page Mill at Hanover and a third officer farther down on Hanover. Traffic didn't appear to clogged up by the closure at the time.

Phillips said she saw people still waiting at bus stops within the blocked-off area.

DXC Technology Company and Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford offices are a few of the many companies in the area.

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority's bus lines 101, 102, 103 and 89 were rerouted during the police investigation, the agency said in an alert.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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Comments

Like this comment
Posted by Jason
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2017 at 6:37 pm

3000 Hanover, where the threat was directed, is the HPE (Hewlett Packard Enterprise) campus, not HP which is located just up the hill at 1501 Page Mill (although they are right next to each other).


16 people like this
Posted by Scarecrow23
a resident of another community
on Oct 12, 2017 at 11:07 am

I work at HPi up the hill from the HPE campus So why was the campus on Lock down? Who's stupid policy is this PAPD? HPE? So their idea of public safety is to close & Lock every exit but one forcing ALL employees of both campuses to funnel out 1 exit? Had this been a real active shooter everyone would have been made a defenseless victim because they could not leave. This is BS and needs to be addressed ASAP

Lock down does NOT equal Safety..period!


2 people like this
Posted by Wrong report
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 13, 2017 at 1:43 am

Report is wrong. Traffic was badly affected from page mill to Stanford. It took me 1 hr to get from page mill to sandhill.


Like this comment
Posted by Gale Johnson
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Oct 13, 2017 at 12:30 pm

Gale Johnson is a registered user.

I guess they did the right thing, for precautionary reasons, but it bodes the question...if anyone can, and wants to make a call and cause this kind of chaos and traffic shutdown on Page Mill Rd for that long, what can be done to prevent it? I suggest there is nothing that can be done...so we will just have to live with this new world we live in, with all it's instant communications ability helping us on one hand, but having the ability to hurt us on the other hand. "A nice dilemma, we have here".


2 people like this
Posted by Yes wrong report
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 13, 2017 at 5:23 pm

I agree with wrong report. The traffic was disastrous!


Like this comment
Posted by Sophie Mutter
a resident of another community
on Oct 14, 2017 at 8:59 am

The security announced to evacuate the building at 5, and wanted all buildings clear at 5:30. It took me more than 1hour to leave the parking lot. Hypothetically, if it were a real emergency, everyone on the parking lot would be easily targeted.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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