Issue Date: Apr 6, 2012
My first impression of Japan, after landing at the Haneda international airport in the wee hours of the morning, was the sight of hundreds of people wearing white masks that stretched from ear to ear, walking briskly past me. It triggered a question: “radiation?”. My Japanese friend laughed and explained that the health ministry encouraged people suffering a flu to wear these masks to avoid infecting others. As far as radiation is concerned, he said matter of factly, no mask can ever reduce one’s exposure to it.