SCRIPT: Radioactive Road Trip (Primetime)

He didn't look inside.

BRIAN ROSS

Any metal detectors?

MELIA PATRIA

No metal detectors.

BRIAN ROSS

Any guards, armed or otherwise?

MELIA PATRIA

No.

BRIAN ROSS

Security experts say terrorists trying to create a dirty bomb would begin by throwing explosives into the pool of water that keeps the uranium at the bottom cool.

BRIAN ROSS

If you had wanted to toss what was in your bag into the pool, could you have?

HSING WEI

Definitely.

MELIA PATRIA

Very easily.

RONALD TIMM

Basically, that is ground zero for destroying the reactor. It's zero security. It is no security. There is no security there at all.

BRIAN ROSS

The Purdue lab director says he was keeping an eye on the bags, but would not comment further on security at his nuclear facility. The NRC security chief was not pleased at the failure to check the strangers' bags.

ROY ZIMMERMAN

Another one that we would want to understand why that wasn't done.

BRIAN ROSS

The road trip continued on to the University of Wisconsin.

HSING WEI

There is no guard.

BRIAN ROSS

The reactor here is licensed to hold up to 18 kilograms of highly enriched uranium. A nuclear weapon could be built with 25 kilograms.

MELIA PATRIA

We walked right in through the backdoor.

HSING WEI

We just walked in and wandered down various hallways. Really, we were just standing by doors until people would approach us to ask us if we were looking for information.

STUDENT

That's as close as you're going to get.

HSING WEI

And little by little, we would be continually directed towards the right place.

BRIAN ROSS

Unchallenged by security guards?

HSING WEI

No.

MELIA PATRIA

There were no guards there.

BRIAN ROSS

There were no tours available, but using their wits and a fair amount of charm, Melia and Hsing found a way in thanks to a helpful professor.

TEACHER

I think they're going through a door in the basement.

MELIA PATRIA

The valuable information he gave us was that he pointed out the basement doors to the reactor.

BRIAN ROSS

And in the basement, unannounced with their bags and belongings unsearched, Melia and Hsing were able again to talk their way in to a nuclear reactor.

MELIA PATRIA

Can we have a peek? What kind of work do you do here?

MELIA PATRIA

I think we probably had an easier time getting in because these engineering departments are dominated by male students. And I don't think that they have very many female students coming to visit or expressing interest, so that may have been on our side.

HSING WEI

Will one of you take a picture of us?

STUDENT

Yeah, you can take a picture.

RONALD TIMM

It's theirs. They own that reactor. It is theirs. There is no security. It's not failed because failed would say there's something that I was able to challenge and didn't work. In this particular case, there was nothing there to even challenge. And shame on them and shame on the NRC which is overlooking what they're doing.

BRIAN ROSS

Despite what our video shows, the University of Wisconsin says our two students never made it past the safety threshold. They clearly did. And NRC officials say they have opened an investigation into what they say may be one of the most serious security lapses that we found.

ROY ZIMMERMAN

It warrants further review, and we will do that.

BRIAN ROSS

Doesn't please you to see that.

ROY ZIMMERMAN

Does not please me.

HSING WEI

Can I take another picture of it?

STUDENT

One more.

BRIAN ROSS

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