SAN ANTONIO, Tex. (INTELLIHUB) — It’s not the first time that U.S. plutonium has gone missing but more than a year later the radioactive material which can be used to make a dirty bomb has not been recovered, according to a new report.
The plutonium went missing in March of 2017 after it was stolen out of a Idaho National Laboratory-owned truck that was parked at a Marriott hotel off of Highway 410.
From the Idaho Statesman:
No public announcement of the March 21 incident has been made by either the San Antonio police or by the FBI, which the police consulted by telephone. When asked, officials declined to say exactly how much plutonium and cesium were missing. But Idaho lab spokeswoman Sarah Neumann said the plutonium in particular wasn’t enough to be fashioned into a nuclear bomb.
It is nonetheless now part of a much larger amount of plutonium that over the years has gone quietly missing from stockpiles owned by the U.S. military, often without any public notice.
Unlike civilian stocks, which are closely monitored by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and openly regulated — with reports of thefts or disappearances sent to an international agency in Vienna — military stocks tended by the Department of Energy are much less transparent.