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AIRPORT SCANNERS

AIRPORT SCANNERS ARE THE LEAST OF YOUR RADIATION WORRIES, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Don’t want to be exposed to radiation while traversing security checkpoints at airports?  Ok, then you may be signing up for a humiliating pat down, such as we’ve seen in recent news stories.  Instead, go armed with the facts.  That’s the advice of Mahadevappa Mahesh, chief physicist  at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and author of several studies on the scanners.

MAHESH:  I stand behind what we have said all along that the radiation exposure in these backscatter airport scanners are quite low, in fact quite negligible.  To put this in perspective the radiation dose in one of these backscatter machines is so low that one has to really undergo 1000 to 2000 of these scans before they get a radiation dose equal to one chest x-ray.           :24

Mahesh reminds people that radiation exposure at 30,000 feet is considerable, yet no one is insisting planes fly at lower altitudes.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.


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