HC Deb 14 July 1958 vol 591 cc795-6
1. Mr. Hector Hughes

asked the Minister of Supply, in view of the resulting disease and death which can be caused by the eating of fish affected by radioactivity from bomb tests in the area of the Pacific Ocean restricted for bomb tests, if he will specify the nature and extent of the study of Pacific Ocean currents which provide the evidence as to the distance and directions infected waters and infected fish can travel from that restricted area.

The Minister of Supply (Mr. Aubrey Jones)

The Christmas Island tests are high altitude bursts and the fall-out in the locality is extremely low. Careful sampling, continuously carried out, has shown no case in which fish have been contaminated as the result of the tests. The risk of contamination to fish is judged to be negligible.

Mr. Hughes

Is the Minister aware that this is a scientific, not a haphazard, matter which deserves a scientific answer, and that he has not given it? Will the right hon. Gentleman have another go? Is he aware that affected fish have been found hundreds of miles away from the sites of these tests and that it is greatly in the public interest that he should deal with the matter in a serious way?

Mr. Jones

It is on scientific grounds that I affirm that the risk of contamination to fish is negligible.