Mon, Mar 14, 2011 - Page 1 News List

Radiation from Japan not reaching Taiwan: official

Staff Writer, with CNA

Radiation monitoring systems around Taiwan have not yet detected any radiation from an explosion at a nuclear power plant in Japan, a government official said yesterday.

“There have not been any unusual readings based on the results of our 24-hour monitoring systems,” Atomic Energy Council (AEC) Deputy Minister Shieh Der-jhy (謝得志) told a press briefing earlier in the day.

“It has had absolutely no impact on Taiwan,” he said. “Winds are also favorable as they are not blowing in Taiwan’s direction. Therefore, everyone can relax.”

Concerns have been raised that the wind could carry radioactive material released from a crippled nuclear power plant in Fukushima Prefecture to Taiwan, a distance of more than 2,000km.

Fukushima was one of the many areas along the northeastern coast of Honshu island that were battered by a magnitude 8.9 earthquake and an ensuing tsunami on Friday.

As there was no threat of radiation contamination in Taiwan at present, Shieh said there was no reason for people to take iodine, which can help block the intake of radioactive material in the thyroid.

Separately, at a national security meeting earlier yesterday, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) told government agencies to continue monitoring whether radiation from Japan would have an impact on Taiwan.

The nation should be on high alert, Ma said at the opening of a national security meeting on the Japanese disaster, adding that Taiwan needed to examine its disaster readiness in light of the aftermath of the quake and tsunami.

The meeting was also attended by Premier Wu Den-yih (吳敦義), National Security Council Secretary-General Hu Wei-jen (胡為真), Vice Premier Sean Chen (陳?), Minister of National Defense Kao Hua-chu (高華柱) and Minister of the Interior Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺).

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