Nuclear Power Plant Emergency Guide for Dukes County Employees and Friends of Dukes County. Town Emergency Managers are the primary source of emergency management directives for the citizens of each of the towns in Dukes County.
- Every household should create and practice a Family Disaster plan and maintain a Disaster Supplies Kit.
- Every household should make specific plans for what to do in the event of a nuclear power plant accident and practice the plans
- Every household should obtain KI (Potassium Iodide) pills for all the members of their family from their local Board of Health agent
Hazards Inherent in Nuclear Power Plant Emergencies
- Radiation exposure to the body from the cloud and particles deposited on the ground
- Inhalation of radioactive materials
- Ingestion of radioactive materials
Power Plant Emergency Terms
- Emergency Planning Zones:
- Within a 10 mile radius of the plant ( people could be harmed by direct radiation exposure )
- ( The federal government selected 10 miles because it is the distance beyond which any radiation exposure would be so small as to not warrant any type of protective actions by the public . )
- Within a 50 mile radius but outside the 10 mile of the plant ( radioactive materials could contaminate water supplies, food crops, and livestock; distribution of radioactive materials depends on wind direction, weather, and other factors) ( Martha’s Vineyard lies within the 50 mile radius )
- Minimizing Radiation Exposure (usually within the 10 mile radius of the plant) ( applicable only if off-island )
- Time – Limit your time exposed to radioactive material
- Distance – The more distance between you and the source of the radiation, the better
- Shielding. The more heavy and dense the material between you and the source of the radiation, the better
- Take KI pills upon recommendation of government officials
- Nuclear Emergency Terms used to describe the type of event (this will give you some idea of the intensity and possible danger of the event)
- Notification of Unusual Event:
- A small problem has occurred at the plant. No radiation material release is expected. Federal, State, County, and Town officials will be told right away. No action on your part wil be necessary
- A small problem has occurred, and small amounts of radiation material could leak inside the plant. This will not affect you, and you should not have to do anything.
- Site Area Emergency:
- A more serious problem has occurred, and small amounts of radiation material could leak from the plant. If necessary State, and Town officials will act to assure public safety. County officials will act to assure the safety of Dukes County employees. Listen to your radio or television for safety information. Monitor your County email and your Ping4 app for messages from County officials.
- General Emergency:
- This is the most serious problem, Radiation material could leak outside the plant and off the plant site. A General Emergency will not immediately affect Dukes County because of the distance that any possible radiation must travel. The Dukes County Emergency Management department will monitor messages from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, the conditions of the release, the wind directions and speed, weather, the plume direction and will keep Dukes County employees apprised of conditions.
- State, and Town officials will act to assure public safety. County officials will act to assure the safety of Dukes County employees. Listen to your radio or television for safety information. Monitor your County email and your Ping4 app for messages from County officials.
- Notification of Unusual Event:
Actions to Take During a Nuclear Power Plant Emergency
Take the following measures during a nuclear power plant emergency:
- Listen to the warning. Not all incidents result in the release of radiation. The incident could be contained inside the plant and pose no danger to the public
- Stay tuned to local radio or television. Local authorities and the Dukes County Emergency Management department will provide specific information and instruction. The Dukes County Emergency Management department will initially use email or phone notification using the alert tree to inform Dukes County government employees of the conditions of the emergency.
- The advice given will depend on the nature of the emergency, how quickly it is evolving, and how much radiation, if any, is likely to be released.
- Local instruction should take precedence over any advice given on national broadcasts or in books
- If off-island, and within the 10 mile area, and hear an evacuation order, proceed out of the evacuation area in an orderly manner
- Close and lock doors and windows
- Keep car windows and vents closed/ Use recirculated air
- Listen to the radio for evacuation routes and other instructions
- If on-island, and advised to do so, SHELTER IN PLACE
- Stay inside until officials say otherwise. If you go outside, cover your nose and mouth with a folded, damp cloth.
- Close doors and windows
- Turn off the air-conditioner, ventilation fans, furnace, and other air intakes
- Go to a basement or other underground area, if possible. Avoid areas near windows; above ground, interior rooms on lower floors provide the best protection
- Keep a battery-powered radio with you at all times
- Keep pets indoors
- Shelter livestock and give them stored feed, if time permits
- Do not use the telephone unless it is absolutely necessary. Lines will be needed for emergency calls
- If you must go outdoors, Cover your nose and mouth with a handkerchief or other cloth
- If you suspect exposure, shower thoroughly
- Change clothes and shoes
- Put exposed clothing in a plastic bag
- Seal the bag and place it out of the way
- Put food in covered containers or in the refrigerator. Food not previously covered should be washed before being put in containers.
Actions to Take After a Nuclear Power Plant Emergency
- If told to evacuate while off-island, return home only when local authorities say that it is safe to do so.
- If advised to stay in the home, remain inside until local authorities indicate that it is safe to leave
- Get medical treatment for any unusual symptoms, such as the rapid onset of vomiting that may be related to radiation exposure
For more information consult the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Radiological Response Plan.