USS BLUE RIDGE, At Sea - The U.S.
7th Fleet has temporarily repositioned its ships and aircraft away
from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi Nuclear Power Plant after detecting low
level contamination in the air and on its aircraft operating in the
area. The source of this airborne radioactivity is a radioactive
plume released from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi Nuclear Power Plant.
For perspective, the maximum potential
radiation dose received by any ship’s force personnel aboard the
ship when it passed through the area was less than the radiation
exposure received from about one month of exposure to natural
background radiation from sources such as rocks, soil, and the sun.
The ship was operating at sea about 100
miles northeast of the power plant at the time.
Using sensitive instruments, precautionary measurements of three
helicopter aircrews returning to USS Ronald Reagan after conducting
disaster relief missions near Sendai identified low levels of
radioactivity on 17 air crew members. The low level radioactivity
was easily removed from affected personnel by washing with soap and
water. They were subsequently surveyed, and no further contamination
As a precautionary measure, USS Ronald
Reagan and other U.S. 7th Fleet ships conducting disaster response
operations in the area have moved out of the downwind direction from
the site to assess the situation and determine what appropriate
mitigating actions are necessary.
We remain committed to our mission of
providing assistance to the people of Japan.