Spain Radioactive Mystery Unfolds as Dirty Bomb Fears Grow via Sputnik

Spain’s Nuclear Security Council announced on Tuesday that a device with radioactive properties had been stolen in the southern city of Seville.

The equipment, which has the appearance of an orange suitcase, is used to gauge the humidity and density of soil and it was stolen from a van belonging to an engineering and construction firm.

It is said to contain two “sources of radioactivity” — namely atoms of caesium 137 and americium 241. The intensity of their emissions is relatively low, as long as they are embedded within the case.

Both caesium and americium, in effect, belong to the fourth category of risk on a 1-5 radioactive hazard scale, where 5 has the least dangerousness.

But that could change if the substances were taken out of their container: the Nuclear Security Council (NSC), in a statement, warned that tampering with the equipment and exposing the radioactive elements could be harmful to people.

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