Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Animated map shows radioactive material's path across Pacific toward California


Austria's Federal Ministry for Science and Research has released this map showing radioactive material from the disaster in Japan moving across the Pacific Ocean toward California.

As The Times' Ralph Vartabedian reported, small amounts of radioactive isotopes from the quake-crippled Japanese nuclear power plant are being blown toward North America. Though they could reach California by Friday, officials said they see no health danger and stressed that any radiation reaching here would be well within safe limits.

Federal officials are monitoring radiation levels in places such as Anaheim, Bakersfield and Eureka.

Some Californians concerned that radiation from the damaged power plant could reach the U.S. have rushed to protect themselves by stockpiling potassium iodide. Molly Hennessy-Fiske talked to Dr. Glenn Braunstein, director of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center's thyroid cancer center and chairman of the department of medicine, about the potential risks and benefits of the drug. Read her Q&A here.


Radiation hot line open for concerned Californians

Japanese student at UC Riverside finds family alive on YouTube

Volunteers at L.A. City Hall raise funds for Japan disaster victims

-- Shelby Grad

Comments () | Archives (58)

Cool! Scary, but cool!

And you are willing to believe that the US government is ACTUALLY looking out for the safety of its citizens?? The TSA just revealed that its porno scanners are emitting 10 times the radiation they should be. They are not out of service of course, just giving everyone a bigger dose than they should. Only you can keep yourself safe. The government only cares about keeping itself self from us.

if radiation comes near my house, i'll sue the japanese power company

looks like it landed right on my house.

crappy map

I'd be interested to see the path of radiation after nagaski and hiroshima were bombed. Surely it must be possible to recreate that data based on historical data of weather patterns.

Grab your ankles...here it comes!

Why are we only being told the day before?


OMG--don't they have any computer talent in Austria? Who puts out a map that is tracking something going from Japan to the West Coast of North America...and has the map break in the middle of the Pacific Ocean? Can't you develop the graphic rendering of the world with the map "edges" be the Atlantic Ocean?

LAME. LAME. LAME. Isn't this where our fomer (LAME) Governator came from? Figures.

The Austrian Federal Ministry for Science and Research obviously needs an infusion of tech talent. FAST!
This map is the dumbest-executed presentation I've seen since 3rd grade Science Fair.

Enjoy your dinner my gilled friends.

Glad I live on the East Coast. Just kidding. The world in full of radiation. Why didn't people in Japan fear the wind after Chernobyl? Because it was nothing to worry about.

the good news is that you will not need your headlines on when you drive at night. Wayyyyy Cool.

It's time to file various class action lawsuits to everyone who is responsible for not protecting the American public. Remember that cancer from radiation can develop in a few years to twenty years from now.

You know what that map is charting? Look at the top, C-137. Everyone is buying KI to protect against Iodine 131's effect on the thyroid. Fine, but I131 has a half life of 8 days. Cesium 137 has a half life of 30 years. Plus, its a bit nastier than Iodine 131. Read and learn:

The title says .1x10^18 units of Cs-137 per cubic meter. By the time the plume reaches the end of the animation it is in the 10^-2 color, so the total dose is 10^15 units per cubic meter. If "units" means particles, them we're looking at 87 Cl/gram * 10^15 grams * 5 rem/200microCl * 137grams/mol * 1 mol/ Avogadro's# = 0.5 rem over the entire area. The area of the plume, estimated by eye is about half the size of California, or 212,000 sq-km. Assuming you live in a 1-acre house, the total dose your property is subject to will be, to first order, something like .5 rem * 4050/212*10^-6 = 10 micro-rem. We're probably ok.

All scientists agree: THERE IS NO SAFE LEVEL OF RADIATION. It all is bad. Might not effect you today or tomorrow, but will get the cancer later on. Not thinking about it or dealing with it will not make it go away.

Wait a minute, I always that that the wind current/jet stream flows from east to west??

Oh My God we are all going to be on that TV Show 1000 Ways To Die-ie-ie-ie

"All scientists agree: THERE IS NO SAFE LEVEL OF RADIATION. It all is bad. Might not effect you today or tomorrow, but will get the cancer later on. Not thinking about it or dealing with it will not make it go away."

Well, thinking about it constantly will not make it go away either. It'll come and that is all there is to it.

Um ya, lets just sue??? What is wrong with you people?? A major natural disaster ravages a country and all you can think about is getting reimbursed for an inkling of radiation? This really is the age of self entitlement isn't it? Well I hope reality knocks you down someday.

All I Have to say is 2012.
What is our goverment going to do about this?
Answer: Let us DIE

The jet stream flows from west to east, as do all our prevailing winds. Good grief, go look at a Weather Service map.

The likelihood of radioactivity reaching this far to do any harm is so close to nil, we should not be worried about it. Not to mention that any precipitation over the Pacific will considerably decrease particulates from reaching western North America.

In far more danger of dying are the hundreds of thousands of displaced Japanese who have been without sufficient shelter, food and water for DAYS, and now they're dealing with another mid-winter snowstorm. Let's do what we can for THEM, shall we?

A serious request: Can we get a comparison between this incident and the amounts of radiation that were released with the Nevada and Pacific ocean nuclear bomb tests, the spill at Santa Susanna Rocketdyne (Northern LA) and the infamous Westinghouse/GE venting in Washington State? Thank you!

Oh well don't worry any radiation reaching the California air will not be harmful just like any oil from the BP Gulf "Geyser" never had any impact on any of the Gulf of MEXICO or the Key West beaches or our beatiful, and untill last year pristine Florida Beaches

1 2 3 | »


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: