Explosions in Pittsford, Vermont Confirmed to be “Dirty Bomb”


For Immediate Release: Oct. 25, 2012
Media Contact: Communications Office
Vermont Department of Health

WATERBURY – State officials have confirmed that an explosion this morning in Pittsford was caused by a radiological dispersal device (RDD), which is also known as a “dirty bomb.” A dirty bomb is designed to spread radioactive material with explosives, but is not a nuclear bomb. This morning’s explosion is being investigated as a possible terrorist event by federal and state law enforcement officials.

Initial reports indicate that the radioactive material called Cesium 137 has been detected in the immediate area of the explosion. The highest amounts of Cesium 137 are found near the site of the explosion, but some contamination will disperse into the surrounding areas.

“Our first priority is for all Vermonters to find shelter immediately and stay tuned to television or radio for further instructions, “ Gov. Peter Shumlin said. “This is a time for us to pull together as Vermonters and follow the directions of emergency response officials.”

State and federal radiological health experts are working to assess the situation and any actions needed to protect public health, animals and the environment.

If you are in Pittsford or surrounding areas, do the following as quickly as possible:

Get Inside

Stay Inside

Stay Tuned

For more information please visit healthvermont.gov, or call the Vermont Public Information line by dialing 2-1-1.

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