ESCONDIDO, Calif. (AP) - A man who recently had received
radiation treatment for a medical condition set off a nuclear alert
detector on a fire engine, prompting police to close down a roadway
in Escondido while authorities searched for a nuclear weapon.
The Rancho Santa Fe Fire Protection District engine crew's
radiation monitor sounded Tuesday when the man and his friend
walked past the crew on their way to fill a gas can.
The Nuke Alert monitor sounded again as the men walked back to
their vehicle.
Firefighters notified the San Diego County Sheriff's Department
after they drove by the men's vehicle and the monitor sounded a
third time.
Sheriff's deputies pulled over the driver and detained him and
his passenger for about one hour while they confirmed that the man
was not carrying a nuclear weapon and that he had received
radiation treatment, according to Sgt. Robert Healey.
The man was described as a Valley Center resident in his late
40s or early 50s. His name and medical condition were not released.
The radiation monitor was purchased with Homeland Defense
Department grant money and is used 24 hours a day on each fire
truck in the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Protection District, according to
Capt. Dale Mosby.