Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bad emergency info = fears and rumours

How worse can it get when bad emergency information practices lead people to suffer more?

Amplify’d from

Japan nuclear crisis: evacuees turned away from shelters

Hundreds of people evacuated from towns and villages close to the stricken
Fukushima nuclear plant are being turned away by medical institutions and
emergency shelters as fears of radioactive contagion catch on.

Hospitals and temporary refuges are demanding that evacuees provide them with
certificates confirming that they have not been exposed to radiation before
they are admitted.

The situation at the plant remains critical, with the Nuclear and Industrial
Safety Agency yesterday that radioactive iodine-131 at more than 3,350 times
permitted levels has been found in a sample of seawater taken from near the

The water is the most highly contaminated sample taken from the sea and
indicates that radiation from the core of one or more of the reactors, where
fuel rods have partly melted, is leaking into the Pacific Ocean.

A spokesman for the agency said the radioactivity poses no immediate threat to
human health because fishing has been banned close to the plant and iodine
will have been "significantly diluted" before it comes into
contact with marine species and then enters the food chain for humans.

The eight-year-old daughter of Takayuki Okamura was refused treatment for a
skin rash by a clinic in Fukushima City, where the family is living in a
shelter after abandoning their home in Minamisoma, 18 miles from the
crippled nuclear plant.


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