A college student was arrested after threatening to blow up a nuclear reactor held in his school’s engineering building if the school’s football team didn’t win.
The 21-year-old student, who has not yet been identified by police, is heading to the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. She was arrested at the Salt Lake County Jail on Wednesday.
Salt Lake County Jail records seen by Metro.co.uk confirm that a 21-year-old woman is being held after being accused of threatening terrorism.
The woman allegedly made the threat before the Utah Utes’ home game against San Diego State on September 17.
The student allegedly made the threats on the social media app YikYak. According to police, the student posed a credible threat because she attended classes in the building and plausibly knew where the reactor was stored.
According to police, the student posed a credible threat because she attended classes in the building and plausibly knew where the reactor was stored.
The University of Utah maintains a small nuclear reactor on its campus. It is stored in the Merrill Engineering Building, which houses the school’s engineering program.
The school’s TRIGA reactor is the size of a microwave oven and is used for research by the school’s graduate nuclear engineering program.
The reactor is stored in a 10,000 gallon tank of water and can only generate enough energy to heat the water stored there to about 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Gary Sandquist, professor emeritus at the school, told the Deseret News that the reactor cannot generate enough energy to melt and does not pose a risk to the public.
“It would probably be a greater risk that we had a west coast tsunami that would hit Salt Lake before the reactor caused problems,” he said.
University of Utah Police Chief Jason Hinojosa told KSL News Radio that the reactor has special safety protocols and that the school has a zero-tolerance policy for such threats.
It appears the student didn’t need to make any sort of threat to motivate the Utes, who are currently ranked 13th by the Associated Press and have yet to lose a game this season. They won the game on Saturday against San Diego State 35-7.
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Source : metro.co.uk