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PLoS By Category | Recent PLoS Articles
Biochemistry - Biophysics - Critical Care and Emergency Medicine - Non-Clinical Medicine - Physics - Public Health and Epidemiology - Radiology and Medical Imaging

Individual Radiation Exposure Dose Due to Support Activities at Safe Shelters in Fukushima Prefecture
Published: Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Author: Satoru Monzen et al.

by Satoru Monzen, Masahiro Hosoda, Shinji Tokonami, Minoru Osanai, Hironori Yoshino, Yoichiro Hosokawa, Mitsuaki A. Yoshida, Masatoshi Yamada, Yasushi Asari, Kei Satoh, Ikuo Kashiwakura

Immediately after the accidents in the nuclear power stations in Fukushima on March 11, the Japanese Government ordered the evacuation of the residents within a 20-km radius from the station on March 12, and asked various institutions to monitor the contamination levels of the residents. Hirosaki University, which is located 355 km north of Fukushima City, decided to send support staff to Fukushima. This report summarizes the results of the exposure of 13 individual teams from March 15 to June 20. The support teams surveyed more than 5,000 people during this period. Almost all subjects had external contamination levels of less than 13 kcpm on Geiger-Müller (GM) survey meter, which is categorized as “no contamination level.” The 1st team showed the highest external exposure dose, but the 4th team onward showed no significant change. Subsequently, the internal radiation exposure was measured using a whole body counter that indicated undetectable levels in all staff members. Although the measured external radiation exposure dose cannot have serious biological effects on the health of an individual, a follow-up study of the residents in Fukushima and other regions where the radioactive material has spread will be required for a long time.