I received text messages regarding the radiation leak at Fukushima nuclear plants and its risks to the neighboring countries of Japan.
The forwarded message reads: "BBC FLASHNEWS: Japan government confirms radiation leak at Fukushima nuclear plants. Asian countries should take necessary precautions. Remain indoors first 24 hours. Close doors and windows. Swab neck skin with Betadine where thyroid area is. Radiation hits thyroid first. Take extra precaution, radiation may hit Philippines starting 4 PM today. Please send to your loved ones."
I disregarded the message knowing how these forwarded messages just aim to scare people. Besides, I was tuned to CNN and keeping updated via Twitter during the time I received the messages.
I still went to the BBC website to verify, though. And there's nothing like that on the site. A news article even says that the health risk of the nuclear accident in Japan is low.
Also, PAGASA says that if the movement of the air coming from Japan is to be the basis, radiation wouldn't reach the Philippines at all. The air is directed towards the USA, specifically the Hawaii. But since radiation is heavy, it would have mixed with the sea water before it even reached the US.
Furthermore, it has never happened that the air from Japan reached the Philippines so there's really nothing to be worried about.
My sister actually called me up instructing me to put alcohol or Betadine on me and my Nanay's neck. She said her sons went home from school with the story of how they went to the clinic to put alcohol on their necks. Funny but her youngest, despite my sister's instruction to stay inside the house, went out to put alcohol on the neck of Kikay, their brown Labrador.
You see, all these forwarded text messages do is scare the people away. Whoever creates these messages has no aim but to really cause pandemonium.
If you receive messages that you know would cause people to panic or get scared, please think twice in forwarding it to others. Make a little research first on how true the forwarded message is. The internet has all the information. All you have to do is Google it, or Bing it depending on what you use, and you'll have access to the truth.
Some blogs, though, are just like these forwarded messages. They also scare. So better go directly to a news website, preferably BBC or CNN, so you'll be sure that the information you get is correct.