LUBBOCK, TX—When a radiation leak was reported at a nuclear storage facility 162 miles from Lubbock, residents panicked.
The internet exploded with fear that wind would carry the tainted air from the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad, New Mexico to Lubbock.
“It’s always a concern because radiation can be dangerous,” said Dr. Ron Chesser, a nuclear expert at Texas Tech. “It scares the public to death.”
Chesser spent 22 years studying the effects of the Chernobyl catastrophe. He said the Carlsbad incident wasn’t as bad as everyone thought.
“The amount of radiation that escaped the WIPP site was so small that even if wind had carried it towards Lubbock, Texas it's going to be so diffused by the time it gets here,” said Chesser.