Reports from Washington say traces of radioactive iodine linked to quake-hit Japan’s nuclear power plant have been found in rainwater samples taken last week in Massachusetts, US.
The low level of radioiodine-131 detected in Massachusetts rainwater samples is comparable to the amounts found in California, Washington and Pennsylvania.
However, public health officials say the pollution poses no threat to drinking supplies, Reuters reported on Monday.
“The drinking water supply in Massachusetts is unaffected by this short-term, slight elevation in radiation,” said Massachusetts Public Health Commissioner John Auerbach.
“We will carefully monitor the drinking water as we exercise an abundance of caution,” he added.
Health officials also say they have found no detectable radiation in air samples examined in Massachusetts.
On March 11, an 8.9-magnitude earthquake, off the northeast coast of Japan’s main island, unleashed a 7-metre tsunami and was followed by more than 50 aftershocks for hours.
Japan has announced that nearly 28,000 people have died or are feared dead as a result of the disastrous quake and tsunami.
The quake is now considered Japan’s deadliest natural disaster since the 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake, which claimed the lives of more than 142,000 people.