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Officials investigate container marked radioactive found near Poplar River

Federal, state and local authorities investigate a small container found near the mouth of the Poplar River (Courtesy of the Superior Fire Department)

Federal, state and local agencies are working together to determine the contents and source of a mysterious container found late Tuesday night on the beach near the mouth of the Poplar River in Poplar.

A person walking on the beach saw a container about the size of a deck of cards with what appeared to be radioactive markings on it and immediately called emergency services.

The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office contacted the Superior Fire Department to arrange for a hazardous material team to investigate. Investigating the incident is the Superior Fire Department is working with the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Wisconsin departments of health services and natural resources and the Wisconsin National Guard Civil Support Team to investigate.

Currently, there has been no source of radioactive material found, and no injuries have been reported.

The EPA is the federal on-scene coordinator, and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services is leading the state’s response. The Superior Fire Department established a landside safety perimeter and command post.

There are no maritime safety zones in place, and there is no known threat to the public. However, a landside safety perimeter and command post has been established around the area.

Responding agencies will continue to investigate the origins of the container and search for potential source of radioactivity.

More information will be released as it becomes available.