Carbondale Petco May Have Sold Radioactive Bowls
By SPRINGFIELD, IL
SPRINGFIELD, IL - The Illinois Emergency Management announced it is coordinating with eleven Petco stores to identify and secure stainless steel pet bowls that are contaminated with low-levels of cobalt-60, a radioactive material. One of those stores is in Carbondale.
According to Petco officials, shipments containing the potentially contaminated bowls were sent to 11 stores in Illinois. While the bowls present no immediate health risk, IEMA is working with federal officials to prevent unnecessary radiation exposure by anyone who comes in contact with them.
The contaminated items are stainless steel bowls 9.25” in diameter, 3.75 cup capacity with the SKU number 1047493 (SKU numbers can be found on labels inside and on the bottom of the bowls).
Petco stores that received bowls in the suspect shipments include several in the Chicago area. The only Petco store in southern Illinois that received the bowls is the Carbondale location, at 1310 East Main Street.
On Friday, IEMA inspectors visited the stores in Chicago to survey and secure the bowls to prevent possible exposure to employees and customers. Two contaminated bowls were identified at one store, and a few nearby items were contaminated, so they were removed and isolated. Inspectors used portable radiation measurement instrumentation. The highest measurement identified was 50 microrem per hour on contact with the surface of the pet bowls. As a reference of the relative risk, a person who holds one of the bowls against their chest for 160 hours, roughly six and a half days, would receive a dose equivalent to a single chest x-ray.
Petco has indicated that all bowls have been removed from store shelves and have been isolated so that they pose no risk to customers or store employees. IEMA inspectors also will conduct inspections at those stores.
Customers who believe they may have purchased a bowl from any of the listed Petco stores should contact the store for more information.