Monday, December 5 2016

VietNamNews

Cement firm's radioactive material goes missing

Update: January, 05/2016 - 15:48
Bac Kan Cement Company is halting the operation when discovering the radioactive material Cs-137 missing. — Photo congly.com.vn

BAC KAN (VNS) — A container of radioactive material has gone missing from Bac Kan Cement Company in northern Viet Nam, the Tien Phong (Vanguard) Newspaper reported today.

The container was found to be missing when the company was asked to move the radioactive material from its warehouse to a safer place.

The company does not know yet when the container went missing.

The provincial police, department of science and technology and procuracy are co-operating to investigate the incident and interrogate the concerned people.

The missing radioactive material is Cs-137.

Vuong Huu Tuan, head of the Viet Nam Agency for Radiation and Nuclear Safety (VARANS), said Cs-137 is a low-level, radioactive material that does not pose any risk to human life unless there is long-term exposure.

VARANS has provided devices to the province to search for the missing material.

Following the incident, the cement company has been asked to suspend operations.

According to VARANS data, the agency has issued licences to more than 6,000 radioactive sources that are currently active around the country. Another 1,867 sources have been given licences as well, but they are not in use.

There have been six cases of radioactive materials going missing nationwide since 2003. Only three of them have been found. — VNS

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