Wed, Jul 28, 2004 - Page 7 News List

Britain wants its citizens to `go in, stay in and tune in'


In the latest sign of growing concerns throughout Europe -- especially in nations whose leaders supported the war in Iraq -- the British government is mailing out a booklet to every home telling people to "go in, stay in and tune in" in case of a large-scale terrorist attack.

The leaflet, released on Monday, tells Britons to stock up on canned food and bottled water, and to keep a battery-powered radio at home -- advice that was dismissed by some as merely common sense.

"It will go straight in the bin, it's a complete waste of money and it's a little bit late," said Paul Kilpatrick, 35, an executive assistant.

"I'd think it's also going to be alarming for people who come back from two weeks' holiday abroad and find that under their door," added Kilpatrick as he took a lunch break at a London park.

The government is spending ?8 million (US$15 million) to print and distribute the booklet, Preparing for Emergencies: What You Need To Know, to all 25 million houses across Briton.

Chris Fox, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers, said the leaflet would shake up people.

"I think people have got common sense but they have been weaned away from risk," Fox said.

"I think it's because we have 24-hour shops, we have 24-hour fuel and 24-hour cash. Everything you can pop out and get. People have got comfortable," he said.

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