UPDATE 2-UK plant producing AstraZeneca vaccines partially evacuated over suspect package

(Adds police statement)

LONDON, Jan 27 (Reuters) - A plant in Wales that produces AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine has been partially evacuated after a suspicious package was received, the company that operates it said on Wednesday.

"Wockhardt UK in Wrexham this morning received a suspicious package to site. All relevant authorities were immediately notified and engaged," the company said, referring to its facility in Wales.

"Upon expert advice we have partially evacuated the site pending a full investigation. The safety of our employees and business continuity remain of paramount importance."

Earlier, the BBC reported that a police bomb disposal unit has been sent to the plant.

"We are currently dealing with an ongoing incident on the Wrexham Industrial Estate," local police said in a statement, adding that the public should avoid the area.

Wockhardt UK provides fill-and-finish capacity for AstraZeneca's UK supply chain, which is the final manufacturing step of putting vaccines into vials or syringes and packaging them.

AstraZeneca has agreed to supply Britain with 100 million doses of the vaccine, developed by Oxford University. (Reporting by Alistair Smout, Michael Holden and Guy Faulconbridge, editing by Estelle Shirbon)

01/27/2021 13:25

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