In Thailand, authorities are searching for a container containing dangerous radioactive contents that disappeared from a coal-fired power plant earlier this week.
Authorities warn residents of serious health risks if they come across the container.
The container, about 30 cm long and 13 cm wide, was part of a silo that contained the radioactive material cesium-137. CNN.
During a routine inspection on March 10, the container was reported missing. The coal-fired power plant is located in Prachinburi Province, Thailand.
A search team and drones are working to find the missing container. Among other things, they use technology that can track radioactive materials.
danger to people
Police in Thailand are also involved in the search. They fear the container may have been missing since February.
Police Chief Mongkol Thupao told CNN it was unclear if the container was stolen and sold, or if it was misplaced.
CNN quotes experts who warn that cesium-137 is very dangerous. People who come close can get burned. Radiation sicknessRadiation sicknessRadiation syndrome is a complex profile of symptoms that occurs after exposure of large parts of the body to moderate to high doses of ionizing radiation. If an adult is exposed to more than two whole-body grays (Gy), he or she will experience obvious nausea and vomiting after a few hours. Source: Major Medical Encyclopedias. or cancer.
The half-life of a radioactive substance is about 30 years.
Thus, the container could pose a risk for decades to come if it is not found, according to CNN.
Not the first time
This is not the first time something like this has happened in Thailand.
In 2000, a container containing cobalt-60 went missing. It was purchased and taken to a landfill where it was shredded.
CNN wrote that some workers suffered burns, several had radiation damage and three people died.
Nearly 2,000 people living in the area were exposed to radiation.
The missing container should now not contain strong radioactive material.
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