Local Radiation Testing Planned

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP/KMOX) –  Fears of radiation escaping from a damaged Japanese power plant have stretched half-way around the globe to our area.

There’s word this morning that the Illinois Emergency Management Agency is preparing to test several Metro East Counties, including Madison, Bond and Sangamon Counties.

This, after minute levels of radioactive materials were detected in grass clippings collected in Will County, along with an air sample collected at the EMA lab in Springfield.

But Illinois Emergency Management Agency spokeswoman Patty Thompson is downplaying the findings, saying they’re little surprise since traces of iodine have been found in more than a dozen other states.

“A nuclear power plant has a regulatory limit of 20 kilobecquerel (kBq) per liter that they release of radioactive iodine,” Thompson said. “The amount we detected is 200,000 times smaller than that regulatory limit.”

Still, the Agency will be in the Metro East sampling air, milk, eggs and grass clippings for any signs of increased radiation.

Copyright AP/KMOX Radio

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