Information for Australians in Japan 17 March 2011

16 Mar 2011 8:06 AM | Anonymous
From the DFAT Crisis Centre

This advice has been reviewed and reissued. It contains new information in
the Summary and under Earthquake and Tsunami of 11 March (latest advice
from the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency on
exposure to radiation arising from nuclear incidents in Japan). It contains
a link to the ARPANSA website. The overall level of the advice has not
changed.

Advice on exposure to radiation arising from nuclear incidents in Japan
The Department of Health and Ageing and Australian Radiation Protection and
Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) has issued the following advice on exposure
to radiation arising from nuclear incidents in Japan, based on information
from Japanese authorities:
The recent earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan on Friday 11 March has
caused major damage to a number of nuclear reactors on the east coast of
Japan. The Japanese Government has established an evacuation zone around
the affected reactors.
The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) has
been closely monitoring the situation, in particular the potential exposure
to radiation of Australians in Japan.
Based on advice from the Japanese government and the International Atomic
Energy Agency, the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety
Agency (ARPANSA) reports that, although unlikely, there is a small chance
of exposure to radiation, at very low levels, for people who were in the
Fukushima area and for people who were in the Fukushima area or areas
affected by radioactive releases since 12 March 2011. The health effects
from exposure at these low levels are considered very low to negligible.
For those Australians in Japan but outside the affected areas, based on
current information, ARPANSA advises that since the winds are presently
blowing off shore from the Fukushima area they are extremely unlikely to be
contaminated and the health risks are negligible. As the situation
develops, all Australians in Japan are strongly encouraged to continue to
follow the protective measures recommended by the Japanese Government.
Given the very low risk of exposure, ARPANSA advises that people should
have no physical symptoms. If there is any doubt about contamination this
contamination is easily removed by washing your body and clothes.
Australians returning home from Japan are highly unlikely to be
contaminated or exposed to significant radiation and will not require
checks for radioactivity. However, if people wish to seek medical advice
they should contact their local GP.
Meetings are being held with GP representatives, the Department of Health
and Ageing, and ARPANSA to discuss the provision of consistent advice to
those who present with inquiries about radiation exposure.
Discussions are ongoing between jurisdictions. Further information will be
provided as the situation develops.
Advice to Australians remaining in Japan
Current Situation
The recent earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan on Friday 11 March has
damaged a number of nuclear reactors on the east coast of Japan. The
Japanese Government has imposed evacuation zones and shelter in place zones
around affected reactors in Fukushima prefecture. These protective action
zones may be revised by the Japanese government as circumstances change.
ARPANSA will update its advice as events develop.
What do I do?
Australians remaining in Japan should follow any protective measures
recommended by the Japanese government. This may include evacuation or
shelter in place orders.
Australians remaining in Japan should not travel to the exclusion zones.
ARPANSA and the Chief Medical Officer advise that iodine prophylaxis is
only required when exposed to substantial radiation doses. It is not
considered necessary for Australians remaining outside protective action
zones.
What are the symptoms of radiation exposure?
Radiation health effects are related to the magnitude and duration of
exposure. Low level radiation exposure produces no physical symptoms. There
is no specific test available for low level exposure and no treatment is
required.
Australians in Japan may find www.mofa.go.jp/ an helpful English language
website with local information.
Advice to Australians returning from Japan who have concerns about possible
exposure to radiation
Current Situation
The recent earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan on Friday 11 March has
damaged a number of nuclear reactors on the east coast of Japan. The
Japanese Government has established evacuation zones around the affected
reactors in Fukushima prefecture. The Japanese government is providing
regular updates on required exclusion zones.
Based on advice from the Japanese government the Australian Radiation
Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) reports that, although
unlikely, there is a small chance of exposure to radiation, at very low
levels, for people who were in the Fukushima area or areas affected by
radioactive releases since 12 March 2011.
The health effects from exposure at these low levels are considered very
low to negligible.
If you were in Japan, but outside these areas ARPANSA advises that you are
extremely unlikely to have been exposed to even low levels of radiation.
What to do if you are worried?
The Japanese government have been screening people where they believe this
is necessary. Residual contamination from low levels of exposure is readily
removed by showering, washing your body, hair and clothes.
For very low levels of radiation exposure there is no specific test
available and no treatment is required. However, if on return to Australia
you and your family are concerned you should visit your local GP and let
them know where in Japan you were.
What are the symptoms of radiation exposure?
Given the low levels of possible exposure no physical symptoms of radiation
exposure are expected to be observed.
Again, if on your return you feel unwell, you should visit your local GP.
Current as at 2200 hrs (AEDST) on 16 March 2011. This information will be
updated every six hours or more frequently as required.
The Australia Society Tokyo. © 2014 |  Email Us or find us at: The Australia Society Tokyo - Facebook | Privacy Policy |
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software