Security

Truck carrying radioactive material stolen in Mexico

UN’s atomic watchdog says truck was taking cobalt-60 from a hospital to a radioactive waste storage centre when it was stolen

 

Reuters in Vienna

theguardian.com,              Wednesday 4 December 2013 09.11 EST

IAEA flag flatters in the wind in front

The IAEA has warned that the radioactive material in the truck could be extremely dangerous. Photograph: Joe Klamar/AFP/Getty Images

Thieves have stolen a truck in Mexico carrying a dangerous radioactive material used in medical treatments, the UN atomic watchdog has said.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which is based in Vienna, said it had been informed by Mexican authorities that the truck, which was transporting cobalt-60 from a hospital in the northern city of Tijuana to a radioactive waste storage centre, was stolen in Tepojaco near Mexico City on Monday.

“At the time the truck was stolen, the [radioactive] source was properly shielded. However, the source could be extremely dangerous to a person if removed from the shielding, or if it was damaged,” the IAEA said on Wednesday.

The IAEA has offered to assist Mexican officials, who are searching for the material and have alerted the public.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/04/lorry-radioactive-material-mexico-stolen