First 45 minutes: Seek shelter indoors away from windows - Deepstash
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First 45 minutes: Seek shelter indoors away from windows

First 45 minutes: Seek shelter indoors away from windows

  • Survivors of a nuclear attack would have about 15 minutes before sand-like radioactive particles, known as nuclear fallout, reached the ground.
  • People should look for shelter in the opposite direction of fallen buildings.
  • The best shelters are buildings like schools or offices with few to no windows and a basement for camping out. If there aren't sturdy buildings nearby, it's still better to be indoors than outside.
  • If you take cover in a multistory building, choose a central location and steer clear of the top and bottom floors. If the building has windows, stand in the center of a room.

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MORE IDEAS ON THIS

The critical window

The critical window

The minutes to hours after a nuclear blast are a critical window. The potential for radiation exposure decreases 55% an hour after an explosion and 80% after 24 hours, according to the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security.

Immediate actions during those first few ho...

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First 24 hours: Rinse off in the shower and stay inside until further notice

The hours after a blast are critical for reducing radiation exposure.

  • People who were outside during an explosion should shower as soon as possible, making sure the water is warm and soap is applied gently. Scrubbing too hard could break your skin, which acts as a natural protective ba...

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First 30 minutes: Avert your eyes and shield your face

  • The best course of action is simply to avert your eyes. When a nuclear bomb strikes, it sets off a flash of light and a giant orange fireball. A 1-megaton bomb could temporarily blind people up to 13 miles away on a clear day and up to 53 miles away on a clear night. 

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