Calgary, AB,

Stolen nuclear gauge may pose health risk to thief

UPDATE - Stolen nuclear gauge recovered:

The nuclear gauge that was stolen from an SUV in the community of Woodbine has been recovered.

Thanks to tips from the public, our officers were able to quickly locate the device at a residence close to where it was stolen. It was safely recovered this evening around 5:30 p.m.

The Calgary Fire Department Hazardous Materials team helped check the gauge to make sure it was not damaged and was safe to return to its owner.

We would like to thank the media and the public for their help with this case. It is a great example of how citizens and the police can create a safer community by working together.

No charges have been laid, but the investigation is ongoing.


Original release:

A nuclear gauge stolen from an SUV with a variety of other tools could pose a health risk to the person who took it and anyone else who has prolonged contact with it. We are trying to locate the device so it can be safely returned to its rightful owner.

Nuclear gauges are devices used in construction and other industrial sectors to perform measurements and tests on materials. The stolen device, a Troxler 3430 model, contains a small amount of radioactive material. A person may start to experience effects from the radiation after 24 hours of exposure to a gauge that is not stored properly. Tampering with the device can also expose a person to radiation.

Anyone who handles the stolen device should leave it sealed in its case to prevent exposure. The device does not produce enough radiation to be a risk to the broader public.

The gauge was stolen with other tools while the vehicle was parked in the community of Woodbine between 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 28, 2020, and 7:50 a.m. the next morning. In total, over $23,000 worth of tools were stolen.

“Breaking and entering is a high-risk behaviour and this incident really just highlights that fact,” said Inspector Michael Watterston, Commander of District 6 with the Calgary Police Service. “People do not know what dangers are posed by another person’s property and they might unknowingly take something that is hazardous if not handled properly.”

We are investigating the theft and are asking anyone with information on the incident or whereabouts of the gauge to call our non-emergency line at 403-266-1234. Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers through any of the following methods:

TALK: 1-800-222-8477
APP: "P3 Tips"

Case #20168908/4318