- removing radioactive particles in contact with the individual (skin, hair, clothing, shoes) to reduce the external dose;
- preventing secondary internal contamination by ingestion or inhalation;
- preventing contamination being spread into the environment;
- reducing the risk of contamination and exposure of those around you.
Contamination tests will be carried out near the reception centres. These decontamination centres will enable screening for potential contamination to be carried out along with, if necessary, additional decontamination.
Simple actions to reduce the risk of contamination
By carrying out the following simple actions, people who were outside during or after the passage of a radioactive cloud can reduce the risk of contamination themselves:
- remove your footwear and the clothes you wore outdoors before entering a building. Then store them in a plastic bag to prevent the spread of any possible contamination;
- promptly wash all the exposed areas of your skin and most importantly your hair by taking a shower as soon as possible. This is a very effective action: given that the radioactive release is deposited on your skin and hair, it can easily be removed with water. Hair should be washed while endeavouring to protect your face as much as possible from the contaminated water.
- if any pets were outdoors during the release phase, they must also be washed. Pay close attention to not becoming contaminated once more. You should take another shower if necessary.
Following radioactive release, you can become contaminated:
- by radioactive deposition on the soil;
- by the redistribution of depositions by the wind.