Now they tell us!
The US Department of Energy, which oversees how nuclear materials are handled in the United States, found that, on occasion, nuclear materials workers had placed highly enriched uranium in their pockets. A report on the subject informs people who work with these hazardous substances to cease pocketing them:
Further, after interviewing chemical operators and reviewing revised Y-12 procedures, we confirmed that chemical operators are no longer allowed to place samples in their pockets and must check their pockets before removing their coveralls.
The risk was, thankfully, very low. CNS News summarizes:
According to a Y-12 Subject Matter Expert (SME), the possibility of “a nuclear criticality accident occurring during the incident was very low,” because the “minimum critical mass” for such an incident is over 700 grams, while the samples in question only contained 20 grams of uranium. Also, personnel wore proper protective equipment.
-via VA Viper