Co60 source discovered in a scrap metal delivery

A Co60 source was found in a container on the site of a metal recycling company near the Port of Hamburg. It was part of a scrap metal delivery originating from Western Africa. The source was finally identified as a metal cylinder of approx. 1 cm radius and 10 cm length packed in a cloth bag. The gamma dose rate detected at the outer container wall was 83 mSv/h at most; at the source 693 mSv/h were measured in contact with the metal cylinder corresponding to a total activity of approx. 25 GBq. The source is now safely stored in the federal state collecting facility.
The event is rated INES level 1 based on the radioactivity of the recovered source.
This event is considered highly relevant, especially in the light of very similar finding recently reported from The Netherlands.

Location: Port of Hamburg
Event date: Fri, 11-01-2019
Nuclear event report
Legenda & explanation