Last night, I listened to the soothing sound of rain on the roofs in my futon – but I couldn’t get off my mind the thought that winds have been blowing from north-east of Japan all day and would be until Saturday and the night rain was ladden with radioactivity from Fukushima to a certain extent: black rain indeed.
Black rain was the expression used to describe the radioactive fallout after American nuclear bombing of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, before they forced Japan to accept nuclear power. It was later on used as a title for a silly and inaccurate gangster American movie by Ridley Scott. Black refers to the harmful particles in rain drops and is doubly chilling by night time.
Anyway, I slept well but I would like to warn everyone not to stand in the rain until the week-end and especially keep your children dry. Watch out for leaky rubber boots where feet soak for hours, have them wash their hands when coming back home as usual, etc. especially if you are in Aichi (Nagoya) and Kansai (Osaka, Kyoto) areas. Of course, the whole Kanto region (Tokyo, Chiba, Yokohama) is directly under, but nobody should live there anymore.
Contrarily to my post on Shikoku, Fukushima winds avoid it this time, as well as Wakayama according to the Meteocentrale simulation. However, it is only a simulation and daily updates change significantly (usually the last of the 3 days forecast is wrong), so the real situation might change on an hourly basis. Even if this was not the case, there would still be a gap between the simulation and reality. A slight difference means that Shikoku could be swept instead of Osaka since it is after all a small territory. The wind direction has been consistently reported and the higher probability is that the whole Honshu region from Fukushima down to Kansai will get a share of it.
Since it is a simulation, I was not so sure of its trustworthiness (it depends on the underlying model and even with supercomputers, meteorology is famous for being hard to forecast accurately). However, the wind paterns are unambiguous and it is raining. Besides, two people told me that they got the information that this rain was radioactive – and they were certainly not the “conspiracy theory” type of people.
If your children happened to get soaked in the rain, it is best not to panic, especially if you are in the Monitored Land (south-west of Nagoya). A good hot bath will wash away most of the hot particles, which should be quite diluted due to the distance from Fukushima. Likewise, tap water might still be safe yet it might be advisable to drink bottled water from a safe source this week. Unfortunately, there is not much we can do about fresh produce. There is no harmless level of radiation.
Learn more about Japan weather patterns. A high-profile Japanese blogger insisted before he evacuated to France that northern winds would blow in Japan during the winter. Every day so far there have been westerlies that have blown away most of Fukushima fall-out towards Canada, Hawaii and Northern California – just not these 3 days.