REMOTE(October 7, 2021): The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has been notified that a portable moisture-density gauge containing sealed sources of radioactive material has been stolen.
Geostruct Engineers, Inc. dba RMG-Rocky Mountain Group of Colorado Springs, Colorado, discovered that the gauge was missing on the morning of October 6, 2021 while it was stored at a private residence in Denver, Colorado.
The gauge contains small amounts of cesium-137 and americium-241. The gauge is used to make measurements by projecting the radiation from the two radioactive sources into the ground and then providing a measurement on the top face of the instrument. There is a plunger-type handle protruding from the top of the gauge. This is used to extend and then retract a radioactive source from the shielded position. When not in use, the handle is normally locked with the source in the retracted, shielded position. The rectangular base of the gauge is bright green.
Portable moisture-density gauges like the one stolen are shipped and stored in a robust, green transportation case. This case should have Department of Transportation approved radioactive materials labels on it.
As long as the radioactive sources are in the shielded position, the gauge would not present a hazard to the public. However, any attempt to tamper with the radioactive sources or handle unshielded sources outside of their container could subject the person to radiation exposure.
The gauge was in its storage case prior to being identified as stolen.
Anyone seeing or in possession of the gauge should leave it alone and report its location to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 24-hour radioactive materials response phone at (303) 877-9757, Denver Police Department at (720) 913-1300 (tracking number T21024762); or the Geostruct Engineers, Inc. dba RMG-Rocky Mountain Group radiation safety officer at (719) 434-4797..
Geostruct Engineers, Inc. dba RMG-Rocky Mountain Group is offering a reward of $5,000 for information leading to the safe return of the portable moisture-density gauge.
Images are similar to the gauge and case that are missing but are not images of the missing gauge.