Officials have ordered 140,000 people in northeastern Japan to remain indoors after it was discovered that dangerous levels of radiation had leaked from a damaged nuclear power plant.
The threat of a nuclear meltdown, which comes on the heels of last week's devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan, has prompted many Americans to examine their own survival methods in the event of a radiation crisis. According to The Wall Street Journal, the United States has 104 nuclear plants in 31 states, and some lawmakers have proposed that construction of new facilities be suspended until more information is learned about what glitches led to Japan's leaks.
According to Ki4u.com, there are two major factors to consider when preparing for a nuclear crisis: establishing a safe location for shelter and storing plenty of supplies for long-term survival. If you do not have access to a local fallout shelter that is designed for these types of emergencies, then it is best to head to a basement in order to maximize your distance from the fallout radiation.
For a last-minute shelter, the source suggests that you push a heavy table to the corner of the lowest point of elevation in your home, preferably a spot that is below ground level. If a table is not available, you can take internal doors off their hinges to create your own table. Then pile any available mass, such as wood, bricks, sandbags and books, around the two open sides of the table, and leave just enough room to crawl into the space.
It is best to store plenty of sealed water and food in your basement or near your makeshift shelter. The source also recommends having flashlights, matches, first aid kits, hooded rain ponchos and respirator masks available in these locations.