JAPAN | Higher radiation detected on fields than asphalt

Posted on July 2, 2011

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JAPAN | NHK | Saturday, July 02, 2011 11:05 +0900 (JST)

A government survey has found higher levels of radiation on fields and forests than on asphalt pavements in towns about 10 kilometers from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

The Cabinet Office and the ministry of science monitored radiation for more than 10 days from June 13th at 400 locations in Namie and Tomioka towns, which fall within a 20-kilometer no-entry zone.

The survey centered on JR Namie station, about 8 kilometers from the plant, and JR Tomioka station, about 10 kilometers from the plant. Measurements were made at one centimeter and one meter above the ground.

The highest level in Tomioka was detected on an unpaved road 2 kilometers northwest of the station, where the reading at the one-centimeter point was 39.1 microsieverts per hour.

In Namie Town, 25.4 microsieverts was detected at the one-centimeter point in a forest about one kilometer west of the station.

Readings were generally lower — around several microsieverts — on roads and parking lots covered by asphalt and higher on fields and forests.

Radioactive substances are believed to be easily washed away by rain on asphalt but adhere to soil and plants.

The government plans to monitor radiation at more than 3,400 locations in no-entry zones and evacuation advisory zones by the end of August.
Measurements will be taken at gardens of private homes and roof gutters, where radiation tends to be high, as well as roadside ditches.

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Posted in: JAPAN