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How were the main characters in "The Road" able to survive the (most likely) lethal levels of radiation?

In Cormac McCarthy's post-apocalyptic novel The Road, and the movie adaptation, it's probably safe to assume that the apocalypse was caused by a nuclear war. Considering the story seems to be told only about 10 years after the "cataclysm", wouldn't radiation levels still be dangerously high?

Thomas Boxley
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