HK media scanned for radiation after Japan trip

Two dozen Hong Kong journalists reporting on the Japanese earthquake and subsequent damage at a nuclear plant were scanned for radiation after returning to the city, the government said Tuesday.

Last Updated: Mar 15, 2011, 13:50 PM IST

Hong Kong: Two dozen Hong Kong journalists
reporting on the Japanese earthquake and subsequent damage at a nuclear plant were scanned for radiation after returning to
the city, the government said Tuesday.

The reporters, who had been in Fukushima prefecture near
the quake-hit power station, asked to be tested for radiation
exposure when they returned to Hong Kong yesterday evening,
officials said.

They were greeted at the airport by health officials clad
in full bio-hazard gear and led into buses that had been
turned into decontamination units where their bodies were
scanned, the South China Morning Post reported today.

None of the reporters was contaminated, a government
spokeswoman told AFP, while declining to confirm the details
reported by the newspaper.

Some on board the aircraft expressed concern over being
put on the same flight as the journalists, all from local
media organisations, before they were scanned, reports said.
"If we had known beforehand it would have been better to
do the checking before allowing them to board the plane," an
unnamed flight attendant told the Post.

Japanese officials said radiation levels today near the
Fukushima No 1 plant, 250 kilometres (155 miles) northeast of
Tokyo, were now harmful to human health after two more
explosions, bringing the total to four, and a fire.

Tens of thousands have already been evacuated from a
20-kilometre zone around the power station.
Hong Kong`s health bureau issued a statement today
advising residents who had recently been in northeastern Japan
to undergo body checks.

All imported fresh food from Japan has been screened for
radiation since Sunday, local radio RTHK reported.

PTI