Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, March 26, 2011

MVNews this week:  Page 6


Mountain Views News Saturday, March 26, 2011

Thanks For All You Have Done

Concerned About the Nuclear Disaster in Japan? 

Many citizens have expressed concern about Japan's unfolding nuclear disaster. This information provided 
by emergency management officials puts current information into perspective and gives some 
advice on what to do (it is important to note that this information is the most up-to-date as of press 
time. The current situation as we know it:

• There have been three explosions at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant which reportedly 
cracked the containment unit protecting it, causing large amounts of radiation to leak out. 
A small crew of fifty technicians at the badly damaged power plant is bravely fighting through high 
radiation levels and fires to contain the three reactors. The reactors have suffered a partial meltdown 
and crews are racing to prevent a full meltdown occurring and to stop spent uranium fuel rods from 
bursting into flames. 

• Citizens within thirteen miles radius of the Fukushima Daiichi power plant were evacuated 
and 140,000 residents within a twenty mile radius have been advised to stay indoors. 

• Attempts to cool the reactors with sea water continue. This is essential to prevent further 
explosions and meltdown from overheating. 

• Excess radiation in the atmosphere has been detected as far away as 150 miles from the plant, 
comparable to one month of background radiation for each hour of exposure. 

• A "China Syndrome" or Chernobyl type event is highly unlikely. The Chernobyl event in 
1986 was caused by horrendous design flaws in the nuclear plant, compounded by a cascading series 
of human errors. The plant was running at many times its normal capacity at the time of the disaster, 
when an explosion spewed radioactive material over a large area, immediately killing 32 plant workers 
and fire fighters, and eventually killing about 4,000 from thyroid cancer. By contrast, in Japan, the 
reactors were shut down by the earthquake, averting an even worse catastrophe. 

• At the federal level, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Department of Energy, US 
EPA, FEMA, and others monitor radioactive releases and manage a Federal Radiological Monitoring 
and Assessment Center. All the available information indicates weather conditions have taken the 
small amounts of radiation from the Fukushima reactors out to sea and away from the population. 
Given the thousands of miles between our countries, the US West Coast is not expected to experience 
any harmful levels of radioactivity. 

• At the state level, a State Dose Assessment Center is managed by the California Emergency 
Management Agency (Cal EMA) and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Nuclear 
Emergency Response Program (NERP). Both employ health physicists with years of experience in 
the nuclear world going back to the 1940s. 

Misconceptions and Myths:

• "All residents should all have KI." "KI" stands for potassium iodide pills, and are distributed 
to individuals who reside within a 10-mile radius of nuclear power plants. This includes the two active 
plants in California, one in Orange County, and one in San Luis Obispo County. A scenario in 
which residents living in the foothill communities of LA County would need KI is not realistic. 

• "We need to stay inside." This is called "sheltering-in-place," and would be the recommendation 
if there was radioactive fallout. Some of you may remember shelters from the 1950s. It is not 
anticipated that any recommendations to change your normal daily activities will be forthcoming. 

• "A meltdown would be catastrophic, and put us at risk." Partially true. A meltdown would be 
catastrophic for Japan, but would not affect us. A meltdown - unlikely as it is - means that the temperature 
would rise such that the reactor core would melt and fall into the ground, and be contained 
there. Our risk would not increase. 

• "Explosions have occurred, putting us at risk from fallout." Yes, explosions have occurred 
and radioactive material has been released, but it is isolated to the local area around the reactor. 
These have been explosions outside of the reactor core, within the containment buildings. As long as 
cooling is successful, and the reactor itself does not explode from heat and gas buildup, there should 
be not massive release of radioactive material into the atmosphere. Even if there was, our distance 
from the blast would serve to protect us. Chernobyl fallout reached into Russia, and as far away as 
France, but not nearly as far as we are from Japan. 

What should we be doing?

As always, stay informed. New agencies have excellent coverage, but the BBC has the best and most 
up-to-date source of news available. (Go to 
for an excellent Question and Answer document)

The California Department of Public Health has established a public information response line at 
their Joint Emergency Operations Center (JEOC), at (916) 341-3947

They are also posting information as it becomes available at: and www.bepreparedcalifornia. 

We all should remain informed and appropriately concerned. However, one important question remains 
- How is your emergency earthquake plan coming along?

Based on the tragic events in Japan, the following information from the American Red Cross is 
provided to remind Monrovia residents of the importance related earthquake preparedness and help 
you plan with your emergency earthquake plan.

How can I prepare?

• Become aware of fire evacuation and earthquake plans for all of the buildings you occupy 

• Pick safe places in each room of your home, workplace and/or school. A safe place could be 
under a piece of furniture or against an interior wall away from windows, bookcases or tall furniture 
that could fall on you. 

• Practice drop, cover and hold on in each safe place. If you do not have sturdy furniture to 
hold on to, sit on the floor next to an interior wall and cover your head and neck with your arms. 

• Keep a flashlight and sturdy shoes by each person's bed. 

• Make sure your home is securely anchored to its foundation. 

• Bolt and brace water heaters and gas appliances to wall studs. 

• Bolt bookcases, china cabinets and other tall furniture to wall studs. 

• Hang heavy items, such as pictures and mirrors, away from beds, couches and anywhere 
people sleep or sit. 

• Brace overhead light fixtures. 

• Install strong latches or bolts on cabinets. Large or heavy items should be closest to the floor. 

• Learn how to shut off the gas valves in your home and keep a wrench handy for that purpose. 

• Learn about your area's seismic building standards and land use codes before you begin new 

• Keep and maintain an emergency supplies kit in an easy-to-access location. 

What should I do during an earthquake?

If you are inside when the shaking starts:

• Drop, cover and hold on. Move as little as possible. 

• If you are in bed, stay there, curl up and hold on. Protect your head with a pillow. 

• Stay away from windows to avoid being injured by shattered glass. 

• Stay indoors until the shaking stops and you are sure it is safe to exit. If you must leave the 
building after the shaking stops, use stairs rather than an elevator in case there are aftershocks, power 
outages or other damage. 

• Be aware that fire alarms and sprinkler systems frequently go off in buildings during an 
earthquake, even if there is no fire. 

If you are outside when the shaking starts: 

• Find a clear spot and drop to the ground. Stay there until the shaking stops (away from buildings, 
power lines, trees, streetlights). 

• If you are in a vehicle, pull over to a clear location and stop. Avoid bridges, overpasses and 
power lines if possible. Stay inside with your seatbelt fastened until the shaking stops. Then, drive 
carefully, avoiding bridges and ramps that may have been damaged. 

• If a power line falls on your vehicle, do not get out. Wait for assistance. 

• If you are in a mountainous area or near unstable slopes or cliffs, be alert for falling rocks and 
other debris. Landslides are often triggered by earthquakes. 

What do I do after an earthquake?

After an earthquake, the disaster may continue. Expect and prepare for potential aftershocks, landslides 
or even a tsunami. Tsunamis are often generated by earthquakes.

• Each time you feel an aftershock, drop, cover and hold on. Aftershocks frequently occur 
minutes, days, weeks and even months following an earthquake. 

• Check yourself for injuries and get first aid, if necessary, before helping injured or trapped 

• Put on long pants, a long-¬sleeved shirt, sturdy shoes and work gloves to protect against 
injury from broken objects. 

• Look quickly for damage in and around your home and get everyone out if your home is 

• Listen to a portable, battery operated or hand crank radio for updated emergency information 
and instructions. 

• Check the telephones in your home or workplace to see if you can get a dial tone. Make brief 
calls to report life threatening emergencies. 

• Look for and extinguish small fires. Fire is the most common hazard after an earthquake. 

• Clean up spilled medications, bleach, gasoline or other flammable liquids immediately. 

• Open closet and cabinet doors carefully as contents may have shifted. 

• Help people who require special assistance, such as infants, children and the elderly or 

• Watch out for fallen power lines or broken gas lines and stay out of damaged areas. 

• Keep animals under your direct control. 

• Stay out of damaged buildings. 

• If you were away from home, return only when authorities say it is safe to do so. Use extreme 
caution and examine walls, floors, doors, staircases and windows to check for damage. 

• Be careful when driving after an earthquake and anticipate traffic light outages. 

For more information on disaster preparedness, to review information on disaster supplies or to 
find out how you can assist the disaster recovery efforts please visit the American Red Cross at www. 

Three outstanding community members were honored at the Santa Anita Family 
YMCA’s annual Installation and Awards dinner. Pictured with President/Chief Volunteer 
Officer, Kathryn Taylor (right) is Mae Doyle who received the Healthy Living Award for her 
contributions to the community as a volunteer exercise instructor at the Y for the past 17 
years. Rudy Castellon, owner of Rudy’s Mexican Restaurant in Old Town Monrovia was 
honored with the Social Responsibility Award for his support of The Y and the community. 
Not pictured, Aida Torres, Duarte Public Safety Crime Prevention Specialist, who was 
presented with the Youth Development Award for her tireless efforts in mentoring Duarte 
and Monrovia youth. 



Duarte students from kindergarten to high school are preparing to strut their stuff for the 
annual All-Schools Talent Show on Saturday, April 2 at 7 p.m. at the Duarte Performing Arts 

 The evening will present a variety of vocal, dance and instrumental performances. 
The competition gets better every year. It’s a wonderful showcase for the youth of our 
community,” said Duarte City Council member, Lois Gaston.

 Judges for the competition are Marshall Jackman, former Duarte Unified School 
District Board member and the originator of the All-School Talent Show; Grammy nominee, 
Karina Nuvo; playwright, author, producer and director, Lillie Tucker; former ballet studio 
owner and ballerina, Courtney George; actor Nick Collins; singer, Beth Stogner; stage actor, 
Jason Wilde; and MAD Town Council member, Yvonne Bullock, Duarte Mayor Tzeitel 
Paras-Caracci, and Bradbury Mayor Dick Hale.

 This year will mark the 10th anniversary of the graduation from Duarte High School of 
Francisco Martinez-Flores, a fledging musician, who died just two years later while serving 
his country in the Iraq war. Each year since his death, and once again this year, the All-
School Talent Show will be dedicated to the memory of Lance Corporal Martinez-Flores.

 The Duarte All-Schools Talent Show is sponsored by the Duarte Education 
Foundation, City of Duarte, Burrtec Waste, and Pro-Printing. 

 General admission tickets are $5; Students and senior, $3. Tickets will be available 
for purchase at the door or in advance at all school sites and at the DUSD District Office 
located at 1635 Huntington Drive. For more information, call: 626-599-5012.

YoGamaDreNew students only.
Limited time offer.