In case you weren't freaked out enough over last week's report of a radioactive plume heading this way (which officials say is innocuous), a prank email with the heading "Acid Rain Precautions" has been in circulation, warning California residents that particles from the nuclear plant in Japan mixed with rain could "cause burns, alopecia or even cancer."
The email, which included the official logo of the Los Angeles County Fire Department, is a hoax. Go outside. You'll be fine.
The fire department has no idea who created the missive, but the Los Angeles Times reports that the wife of an Orange County firefighter brought it to the attention of fire officials.
LA Weekly got a transcript of the grammatically awful email, which in part reads, "If it rains, remain indoors first 24 hours. Close doors and window. Swab neck skin with Betadine, where a thyroid area is. Radiation hits thyroid first."
Because of concern and all the phone calls they've been getting, the department issued this statement:
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"The County of Los Angeles Fire Department has not issued this statement, nor do we believe the statements within the email to be factual," says Public Affairs Battalion Chief Jon O'Brien.
Residents within Los Angeles County seeking information on the potential impact from the release at the Fukushima Nuclear Plant are advised to obtain their information from a reputable agency. Additionally, individuals are reminded to use caution when viewing emails and to always verify the source of their information.
For information relating to the potential impact on the U.S. from the release at the Fukushima Nuclear Plant, visit: