The Ministry of the Interior, through the National Coordination of Civil Protection, issued an alert for the theft of a radioactive material that represents a danger to human health if it is removed from its container.
The National Commission of Nuclear Safety and Safeguards informed the National Coordination of Civil Protection at 10:30 p.m. Sunday through the emergency number of 066 in the city of San Juan del Río, Querétaro, in which it was reported that the company Industrial Maintenance Center SA de C.V. gave notice that at approximately 6 p.m. Saturday was the theft of a pick-up truck.
The said vehicle, a red 2006 Chevrolet Silverado, with the plates GH-35976, was transporting the radioactive material iridium-192 of the WL1405 series, used in the practice of industrial radiography.
The National Coordination of Civil Protection warns that the source can be dangerous for people if not handled safely or not protected from physical contact, causing permanent or serious damage to the handler.
All those in contact with the material, even for a short time of minutes to hours, and especially if the material is removed from its container, are exposed to an extreme risk of physical harm. “However, the material is not dangerous if it is not removed from it’s shield,” said Civil Protection.
Therefore, the National Coordination of Civil Protection and the National Commission of Nuclear Safety and Safeguards issued the following recommendations should the source be located:
— No handling of the material should be carried out except by trained professionals
— Establish a security perimeter of protection with a minimum radius of 30 meters
— Report the findings immediately to the proper authorities
— National Safety Commission: 088
— National Civil Protection Communications Center: 01 800 00 413 01 00
—National Commission of Nuclear Safety and Safeguards: 01 800 111 3168
The following image of the vessel was provided to aid in the discovery of the stolen material:
— ProtecciónCivilSEGOB (@PcSegob) February 29, 2016