The Mexican authorities issued an alert for five states after thieves stole a truck carrying iridium-192, a very dangerous radioactive material if removed from its casing.
Exposure to iridium-192, used in industrial radiography, could be fatal.
The truck was stolen in the town of Cardenas, Tabasco, on Monday. The authorities issued an alert for the state, where the incident took place, as well as Campeche, Chiapas, Oaxaca and Veracruz. Locals are advised not to touch the radioactive material, establish a 30-meter (32-yard) security perimeter around the container and inform the authorities.
Such incidents are not uncommon in Mexico. In February, the authorities recovered three trucks with iridium-192 shortly after they were stolen in the city of Salamanca, Guanajuato state.
In July 2014, a truck transporting Iridium-192 was stolen in the suburb of Mexico City. Mexican authorities later found it abandoned not far from the place it was taken. Several months earlier, thieves stole a pickup carrying Cobalt-60, a material that could be used to produce a “dirty bomb”, according to the IAEA, UN’s nuclear watchdog.