- Sputnik International, 1920, 24.01.2023
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Missing Radioactive Caesium-137 Found in Thailand: Report

Radiation danger sign - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.03.2023
MOSCOW, March 20 (Sputnik) - A metal foundry in the eastern Thai province of Prachinburi was closed by the local government after radioactive caesium-137 missing from a power plant was discovered in the furnace dust, a local newspaper reported.
Caesium-137-contaminated furnace dust was discovered at a local metalworks, Kitkawin Aramrun, the Office of Atoms for Peace (OAP) senior radiation physicist, confirmed at a press conference at the Prachin Buri government complex. No other contamination was detected within a five-kilometer (over 3 miles) radius outside the factory, the newspaper said.
On March 14, a metal tube containing caesium-137 was reported missing from the National Power Plant 5A Company facility in Prachinburi province. The tube has not been found yet. The officials believe it was stolen to be sold as scrap metal.
According to OAP secretary-general Permsuk Sutchaphiwat, the plant melted scrap metal under the temperature of 1,000 degrees Celsius (1,831 degrees Fahrenheit). The molten metal would not be contaminated, the report added.
A danger sign in the Khoiniki District, Belarus, within a 30 kilometer restricted zone round the Chernobyl nuclear plant. File photo - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.01.2018
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The steel melting plant showing signs of caesium was closed and sealed off, the officials have yet to name it. They said none of it's 70 employees were contaminated with the radioactive isotope.
Radioisotope caesium-137 is used in defectoscopy, in the materials' thickness measuring devices, in radiative sterilization of food and medical compounds and in radiotherapy. It poses a great danger to a human body.
The biggest caesium-137-related incident took place in 1987 in Goiania, Brazil when a radiotherapy source was stolen from an abandoned hospital. It was later disassembled, releasing the isotope into the environment and causing about 250 cases of contamination during which several people acquired chronic radiation sickness with four dying.
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