At DFW Airport, Flights From Japan Checked for Radiation

Passengers and luggage face stepped-up inspections

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Federal agents checked two flights from Japan at DFW Airport for high levels of radiation but found none, officials said. (Published Wednesday, Mar 16, 2011)

    Customs and Border Protection agents at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport checked two flights from Japan on Tuesday for high levels of radiation but found none, officials said.

    Passengers said they were checked for radiation as they got off the American Airlines flights from Tokyo’s Narita International Airport.

    Travelers From Japan Undergo Radiation Inspections

    [DFW] Travelers From Japan Undergo Radiation Inspections
    Federal agents checked two flights from Japan at DFW Airport for high levels of radiation but found none, officials said. (Published Wednesday, Mar 16, 2011)

    "As we came off of the flight, they had a little wand or something, and they did us individually just as we walked by,” said Matt Blakeman, a business consultant from Bedford who flew home two weeks early.

    “There’s fear pretty much around; just the uncertainty of what’s going on," he said.

    Blakeman said passengers’ luggage also was inspected.

    Venus Wooten, of Dallas, was stationed at a U.S. Navy base in Japan and arrived home after two years.

    North Texas Family Trapped in Japan

    [DFW] North Texas Family Trapped in Japan
    William Hall's wife and two children are stuck in a small city just south of Gunma in Japan, they're trying to travel 90 miles to get to the Tokyo airport and back to Grand Prairie. Meanwhile all Hall can do is wait. (Published Wednesday, Mar 16, 2011)

    “That freaked me out a little bit,” she said of fears of a nuclear catastrophe. “I don’t know what’s really going on. I’m just glad I’m out of there.”

    Radiation inspections at DFW and other American airports were done randomly before. But the crisis in Japan led to a stepped-up effort to target flights from that country, officials said.

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    [DFW] Disaster in Japan Hits Close to Home for Richardson Church
    For an Asian-American congregation in Richardson, the disaster in Japan hits really close to home. (Published Sunday, Mar 13, 2011)

    Meanwhile, U.S. experts warned of a dire situation at Japan’s most-damaged nuclear plant.

    Spent fuel rods at the Fukushima Dai-ichi facility are in danger of melting down and sending massive amounts of radiation into the air, said Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko.

    The U.S. government has warned American citizens within 50 miles of the nuclear plant to leave the area. The Japanese government has evacuated people in a 20-mile radius.

    So far, Customs and Border Protection said its radiation checks on arriving flights did not turn up any problems.

    "It's good news, right?” Blakeman said. “It means we're safe.”