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

March 17, 2011 |  8:19 am

http://www.zamg.ac.at/pict/aktuell/20110315_fuku_Cs-137-glob_12.gif

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.

RELATED:

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

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