Loss and subsequent recovery of a radioactive source

On January 14, 2019, a shielded container (Type-A package) having Cs-137 source of 80 GBq (meant for well logging purpose) was transported in a vehicle from the drilling site (Malleshwaram, Andhra Pradesh) to logging base of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC), Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh. On reaching the logging base, the vehicle was parked in secured premises. There was local holiday on January 14 & 15, 2019. On January 16, 2019, the container was found to be missing from the vehicle. On January 17, 2019, ONGC, Rajahmundry reported the event to Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) and lodged a complaint with local police. The container was recovered by the local police in the evening of January 23, 2019 from a scrap dealer located in Kalidindi town of Andhra Pradesh. The container and the radioactive source in it was observed to be in intact condition.

The investigations carried out by the local police revealed that the container had fallen from the vehicle during transportation to logging base. The container was picked up from the road by some persons and sold to the scrap dealer.

The event is rated at Level-1 on INES.

Location: Rajahmundry, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd.
Event date: Wed, 16-01-2019
Nuclear event report
Legenda & explanation