MARY REICHARD, HOST: A high school student in New Jersey just wanted to try out his Christmas present. The scientifically minded young man had received a Geiger counter. You know, the thing that measures radiation.
He wound up causing the school to be evacuated!
Here’s why. As part of a science project, he brought his Geiger counter to school along with a shard of an antique plate called Fiestaware. Brightly colored dishes from around the 1930s, glazed with uranium oxide. And that is radioactive!
Someone sounded the alarm and a hazmat crew arrived. Finding nothing dangerous, everything returned to normal.
The school hasn’t ruled out punishing him, but some scientists wrote to defend his curiosity and pointed out the radiation the plates do emit is harmless.
BROWN: Much ado about nothing, I guess?
It’s The World and Everything in It.