Radiation Found On Japan Passengers To Taiwan, S. Korea

March 17, 2011

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About 25 passengers arriving in Taiwan from Japan were observed with levels of slightly higher exposure to radiation, a government official said on Thursday.

Authorities in South Korea had earlier reported unusually high radiation levels on three passengers arriving from Japan.

The Taiwan official, part of the government's atomic energy council, said that the 25 passengers had arrived from various Japanese cities and had "slightly higher" levels than normal.

The official provided no further details. He said the government had set up monitoring posts to subject arriving passengers to tests. No further measures were planned.

In Seoul, the Yonhap news agency quoted officials as saying that a Japanese man in his 50s arriving at Incheon airport had a reading exceeding 1 microsievert from his hat and coat, several times the normal reading.

He was believed to have lived in Fukushima prefecture, site of the nuclear power station damaged in last week's big earthquake and tsunami.

The level posed no public health risk and officials will release the three passengers, YTN television said.

South Korea's nuclear safety agency has said it considers 300 nanosieverts per hour as the ceiling of a normal level of radiation in atmosphere. One microsievert translates to 1,000 nanosieverts.

(Reuters)