Radiation Contamination

Federal authorities have established 10-mile and 50-mile Emergency Planning Zones as the basis for planning to protect the public from exposure to radiation in the unlikely event of an accident at a nuclear power plant. For areas within 10 miles of a nuclear power plant the planning zone is called the Exposure Path Zone (EPZ), and for areas within 10 to 50 miles of a nuclear power plant the planning zone is called the Ingestion Path Zone (IPZ). The entire City of Haverhill is located within the 50-mile IPZ for Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant, which is located 12 miles north-east of Haverhill in Seabrook, New Hampshire.



Planning for the 50-mile IPZ includes identifying and monitoring crops that may be consumed by humans or animals, and dairy and/or drinking water facilities or supplies that are located in an open environment that could be exposed to radioactive fallout.

An accident or incident at a nuclear power plant is classified in one of four ways:

  • Unusual Event - minor incident such as severe weather.
  • Alert - minor incident that could affect reactor safety.
  • Site Area Emergency - more serious, reactor could be leaking.
  • General Emergency - most severe, radiation release off site possible.

The public within these zones could be notified of such events by a variety of methods, including:

  • Radio
  • Television
  • Door-to-door Notification
  • Public Safety Vehicle
  • Marine interests via Marine VHF radio

For additional information about the two nearby nuclear power plants, visit:
Seabrook Website- www.fpl.com/environment/nuclear/about_seabrook_station.shtml