GREENSBORO, N.C. -- News of suspicious packages containing pipe bombs sent to high profile politicians and celebrities has a lot of us on edge.

Especially with the holidays approaching - when we're all sending and receiving packages nonstop.

WFMY News 2's Jessica Winters spoke with North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation Bomb Squad Commander Tim Luper. Commander Luper says they've responded to 99 calls this year, so far.

"All of those calls are a host of different things – some of them are explosive devices, some of them are explosives that need to be rendered safe, some of them are people making homemade explosives, some of them are suspicious packages that don’t turn out to be anything."

Commander Luper says the average amount of calls the Bomb Squad gets per year is 120.

"Out of those 120 calls, 10-20 of those might be suspicious packages."

What are the tell tale signs of a suspicious package?

Commander Luper says they come in many forms.

Courtesy: North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation

"The first order of business I like to ask myself – is it expected, is it normal, and does it belong?" Luper said. "Because not all suspicious packages come through the mail, some are left at a residence or at a school, at a business, so not all suspicious packages go through the mail."

Luper said they rarely respond to bomb threats in the Triad because both Greensboro and Winston-Salem Police Departments have their own bomb squads.

"One of the reasons at the state level we don't have a lot of calls to go in the Triad because Winston-Salem has their own bomb squad and Greensboro has their own bomb squad so most of that is handled at the local level."