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Thread: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

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    Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Yahoo!

    Tepojaco (Mexico) (AFP) - Mexican authorities scrambled Wednesday to find a truck containing "extremely dangerous" radioactive material used in medical treatment that was stolen by two gunmen two days ago, officials said.

    The white Volkswagen Worker truck was transporting a teletherapy device containing cobalt-60 when it was stolen Monday in the central Hidalgo state town of Tepojaco, near Mexico City, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

    Mexico's National Commission for Nuclear Safety and Safeguards (CNSNS) told AFP the medical equipment contained 60 grams of cobalt-60, a quantity which experts say could be enough to build a "dirty bomb" if it fell in the wrong hands.

    The driver told investigators that the gunmen approached him at a service station, tied him up and drove away with the truck, according to a text of the testimony shown by the Hidalgo state prosecutor's office.



    The fact this was stolen leads me to believe there's a cause for concern. For who I don't know.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Here's a similar story from 30 years ago:

    As NPR's Scott Hensley tells us, "there was a similar case 30 years ago that led to one of the worst radioactive contaminations in North America."

    Scott is referring to an incident that began in Mexico in late 1983, after which a man acquired the nickname "El Cobalto."

    In that case, a cascade of events unfolded after a hospital handyman named Vicente Sotelo Alardin inadvertently put pellets containing cobalt 60 from a radiotherapy machine in the bed of his pickup truck in Ciudad Juarez, just over the Rio Grande from El Paso, Texas.

    The vehicle became "hot," as the comptroller of Texas wrote, emitting 50 rads of radioactivity an hour — "enough to reduce the number of white blood cells that protect the body from infection and to inflict at least temporary damage to the chromosomes of anyone close by."

    But that was merely the source, not the extent, of the troubles. Again, from the Texas report:

    "Sotelo's mistake was in pilfering an unmarked capsule from the load and throwing it into the back of his pick-up truck. Later, when he pried open the capsule, out spilled 6,010 small, silvery pellets that looked like cake decorations but were in fact loaded with high levels of the radioactive cobalt 60 isotope. Some of the pellets rolled into the truck bed and onto the road. Others remained inside the capsule, which Sotelo took to the junkyard and sold as scrap for the peso equivalent of $9. There, the capsule was dumped near a huge magnet used to load scrap metal onto trucks bound for two northern Mexico foundries.
    "According to investigators, each pellet in the capsule was capable of producing a dose of 25 rads per hour. As the junkyard magnet moved the scrap metal around, the pellets were mixed with other materials, pulverized, and spread across the area. Others became imbedded in truck tires and were then jarred loose along highways. An estimated 300 curies of radioactive cobalt found their way to the two Mexican foundries, one of which manufactured metal table legs for shipment to the largest distributor of restaurant tables in the U.S., while the other produced steel rods used in the reinforcement of concrete building projects. About 600 tons of the contaminated steel were shipped to the U.S. from December 1983 to January 1984."

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    Yahoo!

    Tepojaco (Mexico) (AFP) - Mexican authorities scrambled Wednesday to find a truck containing "extremely dangerous" radioactive material used in medical treatment that was stolen by two gunmen two days ago, officials said.

    The white Volkswagen Worker truck was transporting a teletherapy device containing cobalt-60 when it was stolen Monday in the central Hidalgo state town of Tepojaco, near Mexico City, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

    Mexico's National Commission for Nuclear Safety and Safeguards (CNSNS) told AFP the medical equipment contained 60 grams of cobalt-60, a quantity which experts say could be enough to build a "dirty bomb" if it fell in the wrong hands.

    The driver told investigators that the gunmen approached him at a service station, tied him up and drove away with the truck, according to a text of the testimony shown by the Hidalgo state prosecutor's office.



    The fact this was stolen leads me to believe there's a cause for concern. For who I don't know.
    I'll laugh if the hijackers thought they were lifting a truckload of Ben & Jerry's ice cream or baby diapers. Jokes on them!
    Give a man a fish and he can eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he can sit in a boat, drinking beer all day while you fool around with his Woman.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Quote Originally Posted by HenryChinaski View Post
    I'll laugh if the hijackers thought they were lifting a truckload of Ben & Jerry's ice cream or baby diapers. Jokes on them!
    Let's hope they're not on their way for some Christmas shopping on our side of the border.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    Let's hope they're not on their way for some Christmas shopping on our side of the border.
    As long as they stay west of the Mississippi River, my concerns are satisfied.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    Yahoo!

    Tepojaco (Mexico) (AFP) - Mexican authorities scrambled Wednesday to find a truck containing "extremely dangerous" radioactive material used in medical treatment that was stolen by two gunmen two days ago, officials said.

    The white Volkswagen Worker truck was transporting a teletherapy device containing cobalt-60 when it was stolen Monday in the central Hidalgo state town of Tepojaco, near Mexico City, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

    Mexico's National Commission for Nuclear Safety and Safeguards (CNSNS) told AFP the medical equipment contained 60 grams of cobalt-60, a quantity which experts say could be enough to build a "dirty bomb" if it fell in the wrong hands.

    The driver told investigators that the gunmen approached him at a service station, tied him up and drove away with the truck, according to a text of the testimony shown by the Hidalgo state prosecutor's office.



    The fact this was stolen leads me to believe there's a cause for concern. For who I don't know.


    Enough to make a dirty Bomb eh.....from out of medical equipment. Wonder how many of those in ME are getting into Mexico.....would be my question.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Quote Originally Posted by MMC View Post
    Enough to make a dirty Bomb eh.....from out of medical equipment. Wonder how many of those in ME are getting into Mexico.....would be my question.
    They'd probably kill themselves before they were able to make an effective dirty bomb.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    I'm in the dirty bomb camp. What a perfect terrorist opportunity this is, hijack this stuff in Mexico and scoot across the border to America and semi nuke a city. My guess is if we don't find this stuff it will find us.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    Yahoo!

    Tepojaco (Mexico) (AFP) - Mexican authorities scrambled Wednesday to find a truck containing "extremely dangerous" radioactive material used in medical treatment that was stolen by two gunmen two days ago, officials said.

    The white Volkswagen Worker truck was transporting a teletherapy device containing cobalt-60 when it was stolen Monday in the central Hidalgo state town of Tepojaco, near Mexico City, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

    Mexico's National Commission for Nuclear Safety and Safeguards (CNSNS) told AFP the medical equipment contained 60 grams of cobalt-60, a quantity which experts say could be enough to build a "dirty bomb" if it fell in the wrong hands.

    The driver told investigators that the gunmen approached him at a service station, tied him up and drove away with the truck, according to a text of the testimony shown by the Hidalgo state prosecutor's office.



    The fact this was stolen leads me to believe there's a cause for concern. For who I don't know.
    This is a dirty bomb waiting to happen. I hope that the truck was stolen to get ransom from the company, but I doubt it. Sounds like an action that al Qaeda or one of its affiliates would do.

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    Re: Truck with dangerous radioactive waste stolen in Mexico

    Quote Originally Posted by Sherman123 View Post
    They'd probably kill themselves before they were able to make an effective dirty bomb.

    I wouldn't complain if they did and it happened in Mexico. But if they broke it down and got in here. That's where my concern would be. Also now that they can learn themselves that they may be able to do so with medical equipment. Since they watch with news too.

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