Traces of radiation in New York likely from Fukushima reactors

New York officials said, traces were detected by nuclear monitoring devices.

Updated: Mar 30, 2011, 23:50 PM IST

New York: Traces of radioactive iodine, most likely from Japan`s Fukushima nuclear reactors, were detected in New York, news reports said Wednesday, citing the state`s health department.

New York officials said the traces were detected by nuclear monitoring devices. But the health department in state capital Albany said the levels of radioactivity were minute and not harmful to the public.

News reports said the health department reported finding the traces Tuesday in air and rainwater, which are consistent with findings in other US states where trace amounts of radioactivity have been found in recent days.

The US government said radioactive particles have been detected in Alabama, Alaska, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada and Washington, while small amounts were also found in the Pacific islands of Guam, Saipan and the Northern Mariana Islands.

The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was severely damaged by the magnitude-9 earthquake and tsunami March 11, causing fires and explosions that released radioactive material in the air.

Japan was still working to get the situation under control and Wednesday was considering new measures to tackle the nation`s worst ever nuclear crisis, including wrapping up its damaged Fukushima plant with radiation-proof blanket, the government said.