INSIDE EDITION - The world is on edge as North Korea threatens America with a nuclear attack, and many are imagining the unthinkable.
If you are half-a-mile from the epicenter of the explosion and have the knowledge on what to do, it's possible to survive a nuclear blast.
"It’s what you do in the first 5 to 10 minutes after a bomb goes off that's going to save your life,” radiation safety expert Andy Karam told Inside Edition. “After an explosion, there's gonna be fallout and that fallout is gonna be intensely radioactive. If you're outside, that can kill you.”
If you can get inside and put 20 to 30 feet between you and the fallout, that distance will save your life.
He demonstrated to Inside Edition that if you run to the basement of a building and get as close to the center, as far away from the exterior walls and roof as possible, you may have a shot.
The location is “the furthest distance from the fallout that is coming down outside,” he said.
During the Cold War, American citizens were instructed to “duck and cover” in the event of a nuclear blast, and that advice still holds true today.
“If the building is shaking, you should get down and protect yourself from falling debris or flying glass from the window being blown in,” he said.
You should then check for radiation exposure in your hair, shoulders, nose, and mouth to see if any hazardous material may have been inhaled.
A Geiger counter can detect how much — if any — fallout is on you or near you.
There are also certain steps you can take if you believe you may have been exposed.
“If you think that you are contaminated, brush your clothes off before you go inside or immediately afterwards and then change your clothes and wash your hair off in the sink or in the shower,” he said.
As you shower, bend your head forward so the fallout doesn't get into your eyes or mouth.
Experts also recommend having an emergency kit at hand with bottled water, energy bars and a hand crank radio so you can listen to news broadcasts and find out when it’s safe to go back outside.
Karam said that you should be in basement for about a day or two “until the radiation decays and it’s safe to leave.”