Thursday, March 17, 2011

Natural Disasters and Public Health

There are many public health concerns as a result of natural disasters, such as the recent earthquakes and tsunami. The US CDC’s natural disasters website has helpful information for those who may be involved with relief efforts or who are interested in improving their preparations here at home.

Radiation concerns

Maine CDC's Radiation Control Program is following events in Japan closely. Several federal agencies with expertise in radiation control are closely monitoring the problems occurring at the nuclear power plant in Japan including the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, and the Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency.

While no radiation from Japan has been detected in the United States, and it is presently unlikely that any will be, we will continue to closely monitor the situation as it continues to unfold. There are three separate air sampler stations located in Orono, Augusta, and Portland that monitor ambient air regularly. These samplers would detect any unusual levels of radiation in the air. Further updates will be forthcoming.

Maine CDC's Radiation Control Program has posted frequently asked questions about Japan and radiation and information about Potassium Iodide.

UPDATE: A web site with various federal resources and information has been established at

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