[ RadSafe ] Co-60 tissue box holders: applicable regulations for disposal

Carl Willis carl.willis at gmail.com
Thu Jan 19 18:19:50 CST 2012

Dear Radsafers,

As many of us are aware, Bed Bath and Beyond recently stocked some
India-made tissue box holders that were contaminated with Co-60.  These
were delivered to a minority of the chain's stores, including the Ventura
Center store in Albuquerque where I live.  The manager told me last Friday
there was not a snowball's chance in hell that they would even let me see
one, let alone purchase one; they had just been boxed up for good.  I then
had to leave on an out-of-town trip, but on Saturday, my friend Gary
Bodman, who teaches middle-school physical science here, rolled over to BBB
with a scintillation detector.  It swung up to ~3x local background near
the employees' annex in the back of the store.  Again, though, his advances
to merely observe, let alone procure, one of these coveted articles were
rebuffed with extreme prejudice.  We know the items are there!  We know
they're hot!  My question to anyone knowledgeable is this: is BBB legally
prohibited from selling these cobalt boxes now, or is it just corporate
management or local management that's enforcing this policy of uptightness
that we observe?  Also, how would the store "properly" get rid of their
inventory?  My guess is the NM Radiation Control Bureau will have that
task.  Bottom line is I'd love to see one of these things before they're
gone and all forgotten.  Any recommendations are welcome...


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