Government Finds Some Old Smallpox Lying Around

Smallpox virus.
Photo: Camazine Scott/Getty Images

You know how it is, when you’re cleaning out a dusty closet ahead of a move and come across one of the deadliest diseases in the history of man — no big deal. “U.S. government officials say workers cleaning a storage room at a research center made a startling discovery last week — decades-old vials of smallpox forgotten in a cardboard box,” the AP reports. The freeze-dried and thankfully sealed virus, apparently left over from the 1950s, was “immediately secured” and flown from the National Institutes of Health in Maryland to a Center for Disease Control lab in Atlanta, where it will be tested to see if it’s still alive and ultimately destroyed in about two weeks. Plenty of time for it to mutate and spread or get lifted by terrorists, like in some ‘90s action film.