To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Nuclear Device Containing Radioactive Material Goes Missing

Nuclear Device Containing Radioactive Material Goes Missing

The Dept of Environmental Protection claims that the device poses not threat to the public as long as it is not tampered with.

Authorities in Pennsylvania have announced that they’re hunting for a missing portable nuclear device containing radioactive material deemed to be a danger to public safety.

The state's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is currently searching for a portable nuclear gauge often used at construction sites to 'evaluate the properties of building and road-bed materials'.

However, if the device is mishandled or damaged then people could be exposed to radiation contamination, the agency has warned.

Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection

The device, which belongs to a local construction company, went missing on Friday after the vehicle it was stored inside was reported stolen in the city of Philadelphia, a press release has revealed.

When the car was later recovered by local police, the device was gone.

The agency has claimed that there is 'potential for damage to the radioactive source and spread of contamination' if the device's sealed sources of radioactive material are badly damaged or struck by a vehicle.

David Allard, director of the Bureau of Radiation Protection, said in a statement: "It is critical for anyone who has information about the lost nuclear gauge to contact local authorities or DEP.

"As long as the device is not tampered with or damaged, it presents no hazard to public safety."

Environmental authorities have warned that they believe the gauge could have been damaged following the theft, and urged anyone who encounters the device not to handle it and to instead contact the relevant authorities to allow a trained specialist to recover it.

Although exposure to low levels of radiation may not pose an immediate health risk to whoever encounters it, even a brief exposure can increase a person’s risk of developing cancer throughout the course of their lifetime, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency.

However, exposure to high levels of radiation over a short period of time can cause nausea and vomiting.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]

Featured Image Credit: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection

Topics: Crime, US News