Database of radiological incidents and related events--Johnston's Archive

Samara lost source, 2000

compiled by Wm. Robert Johnston
last modified 17 September 2007

Date: 16 August 2000

Location: Samara oblast, Russia

Type of event: lost radiography source


Three radiographers were using a 240-curie iridium-192 source to check welds in a gas pipeline. They did not notice the source became detached from the cable/shield assembly (their radiation monitor did not have batteries). They packed the equipment (including the unshielded source) into their vehicle in which they slept overnight; the next morning all had nausea and vomiting. They returned to their base for eight days, then discovered the loose source when preparing to return to the field. One radiographer picked up the source to return it to the shielded container. This individual received hand burns due to localized doses of 3000-7000 rads, and all three suffered radiation sickness from whole body doses of 250-300 rads (for the man who slept closest to the source) to 100-200 rads (for the other two).

Consequences: 3 injuries.


© 2004-2006, 2007 by Wm. Robert Johnston.
Last modified 17 September 2007.
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