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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is a stupid question I'm sure, and I'll be quite happy to be told it's a stupid question, but if there is a full nuclear meltdown in Japan, do we have to be worried in North America of any fallout or radiation floating overseas?

By the off-chance there is need for us to be worried, is there anything we could do to prevent problems?

I heard some people are buying iodine pills just in case? Is this over-doing it like I have a hunch it is, or do some people know something I don't?
 

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Palindromic Pooch
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From the little I've read, what badness there is would hit California worse than us. Regardless, ehMac World Headquarters will have about two days to react to whatever comes ashore here.
 

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More or less my impressions from recent articles and articles printed at the time of Chernobyl:

The iodine pills from what I understand are not preventative. They need to be taken just before and during the worst exposure. I believe five days is the max before the pills themselves cause adverse effects. Beyond that they are only effective against the short lived Iodine isotopes. Iodine isotopes are short lived and depending on wind speeds and precipitation may or may not make it across the Pacific. Cesium isotopes are being labeled as relatively harmless. Big issue is if the cores are breached and Uranium, Plutonium (and Strontium??) isotopes also get into the air. Again a lot of dilution before they reach North America but still could cause a handful of cancers and maybe even a few deaths.

Would love to hear from others with a back ground in radiation poisoning.
 

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Using the rule of sevens, radioactivity of this sort will drop by about 90 per cent after 7 hours and another 90 per cent after 49 hours, and another 90 per cent after 343 hours. Consider the time it would take for a cloud to reach Canada, and the number of environmental factors that would knock out particles before they got here, and the actual exposure would be minimal. Figuring a worst-case meltdown and a 30 mph wind directly to Toronto, particles would take 200 hours to reach here, and would have lost most of their radioactivity, with the remaining particles arriving at far less than one-half of one per cent their original levels.
 

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}<-('o')-
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Sadly, when I was picking up a prescription in Calgary last week, I (jokingly) asked the pharmacist whether she was experiencing a run on potassium iodide.

She soberly replied in the affirmative, saying that her stock was gone and more was on back order, not likely to arrive any time soon due to unavailability.
 

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Mac Guru
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I honestly believe this fear of radiation and paranoia is over the top and increasing by the day. Seriously. You being in Kitchener, you are one of the last people who need to worry about this.
 

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Sadly, when I was picking up a prescription in Calgary last week, I (jokingly) asked the pharmacist whether she was experiencing a run on potassium iodide.

She soberly replied in the affirmative, saying that her stock was gone and more was on back order, not likely to arrive any time soon due to unavailability.
Was an article on the front page of the local paper last week about how city vendors had had a run on the iodine & were either out or nearly so...

Just. Bloody. Stupid.
 

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Using the rule of sevens, radioactivity of this sort will drop by about 90 per cent after 7 hours and another 90 per cent after 49 hours, and another 90 per cent after 343 hours. Consider the time it would take for a cloud to reach Canada, and the number of environmental factors that would knock out particles before they got here, and the actual exposure would be minimal. Figuring a worst-case meltdown and a 30 mph wind directly to Toronto, particles would take 200 hours to reach here, and would have lost most of their radioactivity, with the remaining particles arriving at far less than one-half of one per cent their original levels.
So far Wet coast radiation monitors are showing only normal fluctuations in their readings. Will have to try to remember to track down that website (again) and post it.
 

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Was an article on the front page of the local paper last week about how city vendors had had a run on the iodine & were either out or nearly so...

Just. Bloody. Stupid.
Agreed. The pharmacist just rolled her eyes and shook her head.

Prepare for the next stories to come of iodine related poisonings. Naturally, a whole bevy of internet sources have popped up over night. Just send your credit card info and they'll have it speeding off to you....
 

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That is a great chart, Flipstar! Thanks for posting it.

I don't think the mayor's question is "stupid", given all the media hype over these reactors. That is not to say that it isn't a critical situation, particularly for the people directly involved and those living adjacent to the plant. One thing to remember is this isn't Chernobyl! There's no great heap of unshielded graphite burning, and the radioactive isotopes that have leaked out have been short-lived.

Let's remain calm, stay alert, and provide whatever assistance the Japanese nuclear authorities ask for. Or, as those wiser than me have said "Stay calm. Be brave. Wait for the signs!"
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Was an article on the front page of the local paper last week about how city vendors had had a run on the iodine & were either out or nearly so...

Just. Bloody. Stupid.
Maybe ill informed, but I wouldn't say stupid. I was just wondering myself, so spent sometime one the Internet. It's hard to find a credible source to get sound information, but a lot of info from not credible sources, that could cause worry.
 

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There are much more relevant things to worry about. Meteorites and lightning bolts, for instance. Chunks of ice falling off airplanes overhead. What you're going to do with your lottery winnings. That sort of thing.

The story that caught me was the people in China buying iodized salt. Now there's an example of hysteria.
 
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