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  1. #1
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    "Dirty Bomb" materials stolen in Mexico Truck theft.

    The Associated Press
    Published Wednesday, December 4, 2013 8:38AM EST
    VIENNA, Austria -- The UN nuclear agency says a truck carrying an extremely dangerous radioactive substance has been stolen in Mexico.
    The International Atomic Energy Agency says the truck was carrying cobalt-60, used for radiotherapy treatment to combat cancer. An IAEA statement Wednesday said the truck was stolen Monday while taking the material to a radioactive waste storage centre from the northern city of Tijuana.
    It says the heist occurred in Tepojaco, a town near Mexico City, and describes the load as "extremely dangerous" if damaged or removed from its protective shielding.
    The statement says that Mexican authorities are searching for the material.
    The statement gave no further details.

    UN agency reports theft of Mexican truck with highly radioactive cargo | CTV News

  2. #2
    The Pikey Hunter
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    ^ Thailand managed this first:

    A radiation accident occurred in Samut Prakan Province, Thailand in January–February 2000. The accident happened when an insecurely stored unlicensed cobalt-60 radiation source was recovered by scrap metal collectors who, together with a scrapyard worker, subsequently dismantled the container, unknowingly exposing themselves and others nearby to ionizing radiation. Over the following weeks, those exposed developed symptoms of radiation sickness and eventually sought medical attention. The Office of Atomic Energy for Peace (OAEP), Thailand's nuclear regulatory agency, was notified when doctors came to suspect radiation injury, some seventeen days after the initial exposure. The OAEP sent an emergency response team to locate and contain the radiation source, which was estimated to have an activity of 15.7 terabecquerels (420 Ci), and was eventually traced to its owner. Investigations found failure to ensure secure storage of the radiation source to be the root cause of the accident, which resulted in ten people being hospitalized for radiation injury, three of whom died, as well as the potentially significant exposure of 1,872 people.

    On 24 January 2000, the part of the radiation therapy unit containing the radiation source was acquired by two scrap collectors, who claimed to have bought it from some strangers as scrap metal for resale. They took it home, planning to dismantle it later. On 1 February, the two, together with another two associates, attempted to dismantle the metal part (a 97-kilogram, 42-by-20-centimetre lead cylinder held in a stainless steel casing), which was the unit's source drawer. Using a hammer and chisel, they only managed to crack the welded seam. Two of the men then took the metal piece, along with other scrap metal, to a scrapyard on Soi Wat Mahawong in Phra Pradaeng District, Samut Prakan Province. There they asked a worker at the scrapyard to cut open the cylinder using an oxyacetylene torch. As the cylinder was cut open, two smaller cylindrical metal pieces, which had held the source capsule, fell out. The worker retrieved the two pieces and kept them in the scrapyard, but was unaware of the source capsule itself. The lead cylinder was returned to the scrap collectors for them to complete the disassembly.

    That same day, the four men present when the cylinder was opened (two of the scrap collectors and two scrapyard employees) began to feel ill, experiencing headaches, nausea and vomiting. The scrap collectors succeeded in taking the lead cylinder apart, and took the parts to sell at the scrapyard the next day. The scrapyard employees continued to feel sick during the following week, and on 12 February the scrapyard owner, believing the metal to be causing the illness, asked the scrap collector to take it elsewhere, and had the two smaller metal pieces thrown away.

    By mid-February the symptoms of those involved were deteriorating; their symptoms included burn wounds, swollen hands, diarrhoea, fever and hair loss. One of the scrap collectors went to Samut Prakan Hospital on 15 February and was admitted the next day, while the two scrapyard employees were also admitted, on 16 and 17 February.

    The scrapyard owner's husband was admitted to Bangkok General Hospital on 17 February due to epistaxis (nosebleed), while the scrapyard owner, her mother and her maid (all of whom lived across the street from the scrapyard and sometimes entered ) also began to feel ill.

    A stray dog that was often seen in the scrapyard also died.

    Two of the patients at Samut Prakan Hospital were admitted to the surgical ward, while the other was admitted to the medical ward. All were nauseous and vomiting, and two of them were showing leukopenia (low white blood cell count). Reviewing the cases on 18 February, the doctors realized their symptoms were likely caused by radiation exposure, and notified the OAEP.



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  3. #3
    The Pikey Hunter
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    .... and again in Thailand:

    Similar incidents occurred in Thailand in 2008, without injuries. In June 2008, a cesium-137 sealed radioactive source was found among scrap metal sold to a scrap dealer in Ayutthaya Province. The dealer recognized the trefoil symbol, and notified the OAP, which responded and found no leak of radiation or contamination. It could not, however, determine the origins of the equipment.


    In August, a recycling factory in Chachoengsao Province notified the OAP after a piece of scrap metal set off its gate detector alarm. The OAP found that the piece of metal contained radium-226 sources, and concluded that it originated from unlicensed use in a lightning preventer.

  4. #4
    Thailand Expat
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    Rejoice, dirty bombs are a fantasy of scaremongers, but not feasible in reality. Conventional explosives can't disperse the material over a wide area, and where they contaminate they would achieve something like a 10% increased risk to die of cancer in the next 40 years. That's not a weapon. The workers in Thailand were exposed to sizable chunks of radioactive stuff, a few dust particles can do almost nothing.
    Boon Mee: 'Israel is the 51st State. De facto - but none the less, essentially part & parcel of the USA.'

  5. #5
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    Dirty Bombs aren't designed for destruction, but disruption and terror.

  6. #6
    I don't know barbaro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrybarracuda View Post
    The Associated Press
    Published Wednesday, December 4, 2013 8:38AM EST
    VIENNA, Austria -- The UN nuclear agency says a truck carrying an extremely dangerous radioactive substance has been stolen in Mexico.
    The International Atomic Energy Agency says the truck was carrying cobalt-60, used for radiotherapy treatment to combat cancer. An IAEA statement Wednesday said the truck was stolen Monday while taking the material to a radioactive waste storage centre from the northern city of Tijuana.
    It says the heist occurred in Tepojaco, a town near Mexico City, and describes the load as "extremely dangerous" if damaged or removed from its protective shielding.
    The statement says that Mexican authorities are searching for the material.
    The statement gave no further details.

    UN agency reports theft of Mexican truck with highly radioactive cargo | CTV News
    Narco-cartels?

    There are Al-Qaeda agents in Mexico and they've walked across the *cough* border between the US and Mexico.

  7. #7
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    I was waiting for this.

    Tchernobyl was a very large dirty bomb, way beyond what could be made as transportable device. Didn't do much damage to civilians.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainfall View Post
    I was waiting for this.

    Tchernobyl was a very large dirty bomb, way beyond what could be made as transportable device. Didn't do much damage to civilians.
    Yes, Chernobyl is a tourism hotspot isn't it?


    Anyway, Dirty Bomb materials found apparently.

  9. #9
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    police are expecting the robber to check into the hospital in the near future.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy the kid View Post
    police are expecting the robber to check into the hospital in the near future.
    You're not wrong.



    The suspected thieves are still on the loose, though authorities expect they could turn up at a clinic suffering symptoms of radiation exposure.
    The container holding cobalt was found about a kilometer away from the truck and had been opened, said Juan Eibenschutz Hartman, head of Mexico's National Commission for Nuclear Security and Safeguards.

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