Saturday, March 12, 2011

Radioactive reality check

Everything is fine with the  Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan. 
But authorities were nevertheless expanding the evacuation to include a radius of 20 kilometers (about 12.5 miles) around the plant. The evacuation previously reached out to 10 kilometers.

TV channels warned nearby residents to stay indoors, turn off air-conditioners and not to drink tap water. People going outside were also told to avoid exposing their skin and to cover their faces with masks and wet towels.

The government was also preparing to distribute iodine tablets to residents, the IAEA said. Iodine is commonly prescribed as to help prevent the thyroid gland from taking in too much radioactivity, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency website.
Post explosion picture with just a frame left of a building @ the Nuclear Power facility. 

I was going to launch a tirade about all this, but I'll make it short. 

What genius decided that Nuclear Power plants are a good idea 
in an area that is a known & very active Earthquake zone?


Fran said...

My heart goes out to the people of Japan, dealing with this Natural Disaster. They say Japan is one of the most Earthquake prepared countries in the World. Indeed, skyscrapers in Tokyo swayed like trees in the huge Quake, and did not crumble, which saved many hundreds of thousands of lives.
They are also set up to provide immediate disaster relief. The tragedy though will be if the Nuclear power plants meltdown or fail & cause mass casualties & long term health problems. In other words many will have survived the Quake, but not the radiation contamination.

I read one comment this morning that resonated with me-- that the US should pull all the troops out of Afghanistan & send them to Japan to help with search & rescue & recovery.

Mauigirl said...

I know, this is a really scary development. Something no one thinks about until something like this happens. Good suggestion about the troops.

D.K. Raed said...

Everything is not fine. They are venting radioactive steam now. The best they can hope for is a 3-mile island type incident. Heaven help them if it turns Chernobyl.

I can hardly think of a worse place for a nuke plant than anywhere along the Ring of Fire. Maybe that's why another big island nation a bit further south declared themselves a nuke-free zone many decades ago. That'd be New Zealand which has also had a couple huge quakes this year. Seems like the whole western side of the Ring is waking up. Hope it doesn't ripple over to the eastern side (Cascadia range).

I got annoyed today when I kept hearing newsreaders comparing this quake to xxxtimes Hiroshima. Now I know they do this type of comparison for every large e-quake, but isn't it particularly insensitive to use the Hiroshima comparison in this location?