Sailors swab the USS Reagan deck for radioactive contamination

Sailors swab the USS Reagan deck for radioactive contamination

Wednesday, April 9, 2014


Rough sketch sent from USS Reagan sailor while at Fukushima for Operation Tomodachi.   This was emailed from the ship on 3/20/2011. Check how close the resemblance of Green Gollum to the sailors in the photo at top.  (At that time sent with an LOL)  (Not so funny any more)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Questions Concerning Fukushima from the Mother of a USS Reagan Sailor

 Letter Sent to:

   President Barack Obama, Gov. Jay Inslee (D-WA), Rep. Rick Larsen (D-WA 2nd Dist), Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA)

I am a mother, grandmother and human being living in Washington State on the Puget Sound, and I have some questions. 

My son served on the USS Reagan in 2011.   In March of that year the ship was on regular deployment en route to S. Korea and was diverted to assist with humanitarian efforts off the coast of Japan.   They brought the tsunami survivors water, food and clothing, the sailors giving most of their own personal supplies of food and clothing to the victims who had nothing.   At one point the carrier was less than two miles away from Fukushima Daiichi as one of the nuclear reactors exploded and melted, releasing radioactivity into the air and water.  My son’s work station below was contaminated along with the entire carrier deck when the passageways became a transit area for the irradiated helicopter pilots returning from rescue and relief operations.   He and his fellow sailors spent their time in this work station or on deck during the months they were offshore Japan and throughout the 7 month deployment.

 The sailors’ families were reassured by the ship’s Captain that their loved ones were in no danger and that in fact “the maximum radiation dose they received was equal to the amount of natural background radiation one would receive in one month from sources such as rocks, soil and the sun.”  We were told that their health was not compromised.   I would like to know how one can believe that a ship can travel through a radioactive plume, pump thousands of gallons of radioactive water into the desalinization tanks to be used for drinking, showers and the making of food, and imagine that there is no health risk to anyone on board bathing in and drinking that contaminated water. 

We were told that there was little residual radioactive contamination on the carrier deck.  Why then were the sailors sent to decontaminate the deck with brooms and brushes?   The mass cleanup of the ship's surface Wednesday was considered largely successful, although commanding officer Capt. Thom Burke, in an announcement over the vessel's public address system the next day, said that some "hot spots" remained”.  

I would like to know, if there were “hot spots,” why my son was sent to scrub the radiation from the deck without proper protective clothing or even a mask.  I would like to know how much radiation he was exposed to, working 16 hours a day on the carrier deck and in his contaminated work station below.    I would like to know how many radioisotopes he ingested while drinking the desalinated contaminated ocean water, how many entered his pores as he bathed in it. 

I would like to know if his unremitting headaches for the last 3 years are connected to the radiation exposure.   And why no one to date is monitoring the health of these sailors.

 My family lives at this time on the Puget Sound.    I would like to know what foods here are safe for us to eat.    I would like to know when the EPA/FDA is going to get involved in testing the food supply.    Are the fish safe to eat?  Are they bio-accumulating radiation?  Is my son, who has already been exposed, bio-accumulating more poison by the food he eats?

 If it is true as government officials state that the amount of radiation we are exposed to on the West Coast is no greater than if one ate a banana, then why are so many unusual events reported:  melting starfish, stranded sea lions, the western Pacific sardine population decimated, hot spots along the coast of California,  diseased Alaska seals.     

 Officials, when queried about these events are confused, befuddled, confounded, yet all are sure it is not Fukushima radiation spread that is causing these problems.  Indeed, the meltdown of the nuclear reactors is being treated as something that happened in the past rather than an ongoing event.

I would like to know if there is any authority or governmental entity anywhere now monitoring the results of the unceasing and uncontrolled release of radioactive debris from the leaking reactors into our air and water.    What are the radiation levels in the Pacific Ocean and along the West Coast?  Where is the data?  How can we know that there is not a Fukushima related problem if no one is testing or those who are doing the testing are not telling us the results?  All we are being told is to not be concerned.

If my son and at least 100 of his fellow sailors as first responders in 2011 are now sick, are they not the canaries in the coalmine?   A registry has been established by the DOD: however,   “Since the estimated radiation doses and health risks associated with this event are so low, no one is being placed in a medical surveillance program to monitor their long-term health outcomes.”  

Why are we not paying more attention to the health of the sailors, the seals and the starfish?   

 I do not know if my son is suffering effects from the radiation he was exposed to three years ago.  I do not know if my grandchildren are being poisoned by the air they breathe and the food they eat.   But I would really like to know. 


Mifty H.


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Oh well never mind -- Feds say no danger from Fukushima

Thia is the letter I received from a WA Senator in response to my letter.  I have not heard from anyone else that I wrote, but I guess this is sufficient to let me know there is no danger to anyone and the Feds have everything under control!!!

 Dear Mrs. H:

Thank you for contacting me regarding the Fukushima nuclear power plant. I appreciate hearing from you on this important issue. 
As you know, on March 11, 2011, the magnitude 9.0 Tohoku undersea earthquake occurred off the coast of Japan, triggering a tsunami. This terrible natural disaster left thousands dead and had many consequences on Japan's infrastructure, including but not limited to a nuclear accident at the Fukushima power plant. While the reactors have since been stabilized, there are a number of concerns with radioactive water from the plant leaking into the Pacific Ocean.
In light of the events in Japan, President Obama asked the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)an independent federal agency, to perform a comprehensive review of all U.S. nuclear reactors. As a result, the NRC ordered nuclear power plants across the country to update their earthquake and flood protection features, as well as an ongoing process to update the ventilation systems in some power plants. The Environmental Protection Agency increased its radiation monitoring to ensure that there were no harmful levels of radiation reaching the United States. In Washington state, the Department of Health also increased its air monitoring, and began to check fish populations for radioactivity. The federal government has also addressed questions surrounding radiation from Japan reaching U.S. soil, stating there is no expectation that harmful levels of radiation will reach the United States. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also recommended the public need not take any precautions beyond being fully informed of the situation in Japan. 
Recently, Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz expressed that the U.S. Department of Energy stood ready to assist Japan with the cleanup of the Fukushima nuclear power plant if needed. Please know that I am working with my colleagues, leaders in the Obama Administration, and Washington state agencies to closely monitor the cleanup operations at the plant. I will continue to make sure Americans get clear information about the impact of the crisis in Japan and findings from the review of U.S. nuclear power plants.  
Once again, thank you for contacting me regarding this important issue. If you would like to know more about my work in the Senate, please feel free to sign up for my updates at Thank you again for writing, and please keep in touch. 

Sincerely, Patty Murray
United States Senator

Total Pageviews