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Japan Requests Patience from Rescuers
Security has been tightened in the Fukushima region to prevent masses from entering the nuclear power plant area. Well-intentioned masses have been entering the radiation filled section to continue the rescue efforts of wildlife, farm, and companion animals from exposure. Nobel efforts of citizens caught the attention of the Japanese government and the world. Etsumi Ogino, an animal shelter volunteer saw photos of a pack of collies roaming the streets within the contamination zone that reminded her of her own loving companion and took action. She contacted multiple animal rescue organizations and coordinated a salvation initiative. Some of the volunteers wore radiation suits though most did not. They retrieved as many of the dogs as possible and brought them to veterinary recovery care zones. Japan realized that this high-risk behavior would only increase as Etsumi and other like-minded volunteers stated to reporters that they wanted to go back into the neighborhood and continue to liberate stranded animals.
Research has shown that for every one hundred people thirty will attempt a life-threatening rescue to save an animal. Throughout the catastrophic events of the earthquake and Tsunami of March 11, 2011, Japanís primary concern has been the safety and welfare of its residents and animals. They continue in that spirit cautioning the public that interference with this particular situation will further complicate matters. The well-intentioned volunteer efforts detract attention from formulating the correct methods for animal removal to focus on getting the rescuers out of harms way.
The Japanese government is taking retrieving animals remaining in the ďhot zoneĒ seriously. However, they want to keep rescue workers safe from lethal levels of exposure. Therefore, they have ordered family members and rescue groups to keep out of Fukushima while they formalize an effective approach. In conjunction with the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), they organized the first ever radiation evacuation conference on May 2-3, 2011. This international effort was constructed to come up with a safe effective strategy, not only for Fukushima, but also for any future animal extractions involving radiation leaks around the world.
In attendance for this historical effort were Japanís environmental division, United States Agricultural and Army Veterinary divisions, toxicology experts from around the world, and IFAW. This is the first attempt to recover such a massive number of animals from a radiation-exposed sector. Consequently, little is known about what to expect or how successful the effort will prove. Animals remaining in the Fukushima vicinity have been exposed to nearly two months of radiation while preparations for their rescue takes place. The appearance of slow going efforts is not from a lack of wanting to assist the animals but a necessity to execute a sound plan.
Japanís preparedness for rescue and recovery after their Tsunami was a shining example for other nations to aspire. Through countless generations of research, they have clearly refined this technique. Nuclear plant recuperation in the wake of a cataclysmic natural disaster is still reasonably young in its refinement. The process to incorporate an effective emergency evacuation proposal to keep rescuers safe during a radiation rescue is still being finalized. As Japan continues to take measures to extract exposed animals, it asks its citizens and rescue volunteers to exercise patience and know that their concerns are taken seriously.
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