Tests? They had tests?

The United Nations has approved — or maybe that should be the United Nations has ordered the use of another very different symbol that warns of nuclear radiation.

 In with the new  Also, in with the old

 Since it’s the UN, it’s very complicated, but according to the press releases, the new red symbol directing people “this way out” if they see rays falling on their skull will only be seen if the perp actually opens up the nuclear … thing.

That is what happened in Thailand in January, 2000. A Cobalt-60 X-ray tube dropped off the back of a truck on the way to the waste disposal. A ragpicker grabbed it, took it to a friend’s shop and finally managed to cut it open with a hacksaw.

Three people died and 10 were more or less seriously injured. Would they have run if the tube had a red triangle showing a skull and an Exit sign? The United Nations says,


Well, they’d have to because if not then the entire UN project has failed. And what a project it has been:

a five-year project conducted in 11 countries and was tested with different population groups – mixed ages, varying educational backgrounds, male and female… Developed by human factor experts, graphic artists, and radiation protection experts

and so on.

The part that kind of stopped me is that one of the countries singled out for the testing was Thailand. And apparently the people approached by the Gallup Poll said yep, they sure would run if they saw that red skull-and-crossbones.

I’d like to know if anyone asked them what they would do if they saw the old, yellow one.

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