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Don't panic

British authorities have moved to quell fears that an apocalypse could strike on December 21 following internet speculation sparked by the end of the Ancient Mayan calendar on that date.

The moves follow an official US government blog this week saying it was "just rumours" and insisting that "the world will not end on December 21 2012, or any day in 2012".

UK institutions, tongues firmly in cheek, put forward some suggestions for survival. A London Fire Brigade spokesman said: "Fit a smoke alarm on each level of your home, then at least you might stand a chance of knowing that the end of the world is nigh ahead of those who don't."

And the AA advised: "Local radio is a good source of traffic and weather updates and for any warnings of an impending apocalypse." Other bodies including British Transport Police and Dorset Fire and Rescue Service confirmed they were prepared for any event that may occur on December 21.

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