GARDAI have warned members of the public about radioactive materials which were stolen during a burglary at the weekend.
The material was taken during a burglary of an industrial premises in Swords in north Co Dublin.
The items are described as seven lightning preventers which were "contained in a red metal box".
Gardai have described the material as "highly dangerous" and said anyone who identifies them should contact authorities immediately and should not approach or touch the items under any circumstances.
They resemble aluminium and stainless steel, but are of no scrap value.
Dr Ann McGarry, Chief Executive of the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII) said: "The materials were being stored in an industrial premises, under lock and key in a special, lead lined bunker.
"The box contained radiation symbols, which we'd hoped to highlight its danger.
"If people come in close proximity, it is dangerous. If you stood beside it for more than a few hours, you would exceed your annual radiation dosage, and if you've handled it, there is the risk of ingestion.
"Our priority is to ensure its safe recovery.
"It is vitally important that this material is located as soon as possible.
"I would also appeal directly to the people who have stolen these. They may have no idea what it is that they have in their possession or they may have discarded them somewhere. If that is the case then I would ask them to contact us, so that we can recover the items as soon as possible."
If you are in possession of these radioactive sources then you should move to a safe distance of several meters and call the number below or the local Garda Síochána, she added.
If anyone thinks they have seen these items, they are encouraged to contact Gardai at Swords on 01 666 4700 or the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland on 01 206 6913/ 01 269 7766.