How to Stay Safe from Nuclear Radiation

Nuclear radiation is a serious threat that can have devastating consequences. Despite advanced safety systems, no nuclear power plant is 100% safe from all potential disaster scenarios. According to the Nuclear Energy Institute, 30 countries around the world have 439 nuclear reactors, and in the United States there are 99 nuclear reactors in 30 states. It is essential to be prepared for a nuclear disaster and know how to keep safe from radiation. The first step is to lock and lock all windows and doors.

Go to the basement or the center of the building. If possible, turn off fans, air conditioners, and forced air heating units that bring in air from outside. Stay in your protected shelter for at least 12 to 24 hours after a nuclear explosion. Rain radiation loses its intensity quite quickly, so eventually you'll be able to leave the rain shelter. Fallout poses the biggest threat to people for the first two weeks.

During those weeks, it drops to about 1 percent of your initial radiation level. To prepare for a nuclear disaster, make a plan for what to do and stock up on needed emergency supplies. Identify the best shelter locations in all areas where you spend a large amount of time, such as your home, work, or school. Invest in an emergency kit in case you need to shelter in place for 24 hours or more. Get inside, because walls and dirt can protect you from radiation.

An accident at a nuclear power plant, a nuclear explosion or a dirty bomb are examples of radiation emergencies. So after an explosion, emergency response officials are likely to broadcast safety instructions over the radio. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is responsible for ensuring that every nuclear power plant in the United States has plans to respond to radiation emergencies. This could be during the use, storage, or shipment of a variety of radioactive materials, or during the production, assembly and shipment of nuclear weapons and special nuclear materials. Staying home for at least 24 hours can protect you and your family until it's safe to leave the area, but depending on your location, source of radiation, and other factors, local officials may recommend sheltering in place for up to a month.

Always be on the lookout for additional emergency instructions. Television, radio and social media are some examples of ways you can receive important safety information. Do not use conditioner, body lotion, or face cream after exposure to a nuclear explosion, as these products can bind to radioactive particles and trap them in your skin and hair. Rinsing your hair with shampoo is essential after you've been exposed to radiation. Nuclear explosions produce a powerful phenomenon called the nuclear electromagnetic pulse (PEM), an invisible burst of energy that can cut power lines, telephone and Internet. Depending on how close you are to a nuclear explosion, it may be impossible to avoid the initial burst of light, which can blind you for about 15 seconds to a minute.

It's not a long time to protect yourself from a nuclear explosion and prepare to take refuge in place. Russian President Vladimir Putin put his nuclear forces on high alert on Sunday, raising concern among defense experts that Russia could unleash a nuclear attack or, in a nightmarish scenario, an all-out nuclear war. Some military analysts see the move as a strategic response to Western sanctions, while others take it as a warning that Putin could resort to nuclear tactics if forced to. It is essential to be prepared for any type of radiation emergency by having an emergency plan and supplies ready. Make sure you know how to stay safe from radiation by locking all windows and doors and going into the basement or center of the building if possible. Be aware of any safety instructions broadcasted over radio or television and always be on the lookout for additional emergency instructions.