Nuclear knucklehead news.

Well, that’s unfair.  MG provided a link to the latest nuclear response in Japan.  I don’t see where any mistakes were made.  Even the reporting appears competent(!)  Old containers of radium paint are some of the hottest sources that unsuspecting folks can harbor.

At 1 meter from the bottles, the reading was 20 microsieverts per hour,

20 uSv/h equals 2 mrem/h, which is exactly the point at which we post an “RBA”, a Radiological Buffer Area.  Anyone with radiological training and a thermoluminescent dosimeter (TLD) can enter and work in such an area.  But we post areas at 30cm from a source, not 1 meter.  So this lady definitely had a Radiation Area in her house, which is 5 mrem/h or 50 uSv/h.  We step up our controls at that point.

Over the decades this lady probably picked up close to 2 Sv, or 200 rem, from this hidden source.  By comparison, I’ve picked up 0.08 Sv or 8 rem, in a quarter-century of nuke work.  So, that poor woman.  That poor, poor, 90-year old woman.

Did you guys know the Boy Scouts used to award badges for nuclear/radiation knowledge?  What could go wrong with encouraging inventive American teenage boys to develop practical nuclear skills?

You end up with a Superfund site.

I’ve read part of the book, not all.  The kid was in the habit of keeping his Geiger counter on when travelling about, because he’d learned there’s a surprising number of sources out there.  His encounter with a reservoir of radium paint came when he was driving past an antique shop and the meter responded.  Inside, he traced the source to a vial of radium paint within a clock.

I don’t believe the U.S. has had a fatal occupational dose in decades.  And the last of them have come from radiography screwups, not radium paint.  But because rad work has gotten so safe, Ra-226 will probably always be the greatest industrial killer, at least of Americans.

Advertisements

About wormme

I've accepted that all of you are socially superior to me. But no pretending that any of you are rational.
This entry was posted in Atomic Anecdotes. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Nuclear knucklehead news.

  1. midwest bill says:

    The “green” movement is a full load of crap. The reviewers at Amazon keep talking of the author’s disdain for the Boy Scouts and nuclear energy. But that is widespread, as we saw during the Fukushima melodrama.

    No fracking, no pipelines, no drilling, no nuclear anything, no coal … no anything that works. This is an organized effort to break US so the insecure “progressive academics” can control us, while they themselves are unable to produce anything but chaos and bureaucracy.

    • MG says:

      But, the ‘people’ were so much easier to control when they subsisted on the lords’ lands! Oh for the good old days! Before all this evil industrialism ruined the noble and honorable pursuits of the leisure class!
      Surely you know, they’d be one (a lord), and not a groveling serf, if everything went back to its idyllic way!

      There is, in other respects, so little difference between these two states, and the contract of government is so much dissolved by despotism, that the despot is no longer master than he continues the strongest, and that, as soon as his slaves can expel him, they may do it without his having the least right to complain of their using him ill. The insurrection, which ends in the death or despotism of a sultan, is as juridical an act as any by which the day before he disposed of the lives and fortunes of his subjects. Force alone upheld him, force alone overturns him. Thus all things take place and succeed in their natural order; and whatever may be the upshot of these hasty and frequent revolutions, no one man has reason to complain of another’s injustice, but only of his own indiscretion or bad fortune.

      • midwest bill says:

        yeah … I guess I need to bone up on Bastiat and Rousseau. Force alone does seem to be the final solution … lawyers use the force of layers of lies hidden in bad contracts and forged deals. Eventually people tire of the papered over robbery and fight back … it’s an American tradition to kill the oppressor.

        • MG says:

          I think though, remember Clausewitz, though not in the strictly war sense; that the conflict is resolved by reciprocal acts, each in balance, increasing with each other until one side or the other yields.
          In America at least, those who improperly use power have come to be pretty soft themselves, I doubt they will require real violence to be put aside, in time; but, as you said, one thing America excels at is frustrating would-be tyrants by the means required.

          • wormme says:

            Yes, that’s my hope as well. Most of our would-be tyrants have never known want, suffering, or sacrifice. Now combine that with a historically-unprecedented disdain for their military. There’s real hope that “the revolution will not be televised”, due to its extreme brevity and overwhelming one-sidedness.

    • wormme says:

      No wonder I haven’t read the book. Go ahead, leftists, dump on the Boy Scouts. Meanwhile, the Girl Scouts won’t let me take nubile young things out camping alone. Do you care? No.

      Bigots.

  2. waytoomanydaves says:

    Having seen David Hahn’s adult mug shot, I’m not so sure that zero death toll is going to hold up forever. Of course, if Hahn passes away, his death won’t likely be classified as “occupational”.

    • wormme says:

      He was researching, thinking, tinkering. That would make his radiological passing exactly as noble as Madame Curie’s, if only we didn’t already know what happens.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s