Japan considers new nuclear evacuation measures

2 years ago by in Japan Archives, National

A committee of the Nuclear Safety Commission (NSC) is considering extending the area around nuclear plants where the authorities should be prepared to offer shelter in case of emergency.

Currently at about 10 kilometer around the plants, the safety area may be increased to 30 kilometer.

Seven months after the beginning of the nuclear crisis, the committee is reviewing the consequences of the March 11 quake and tsunami, in an effort to learn valuable lessons. Japan faced strong criticism for the slow reaction it showed in dealing with the current nuclear crisis.

Another measure which the committee is now considering is to ask the local authorities to be ready to provide iodine tablets to the population on a 50-km radius from plants, to help prevent thyroid cancers from radiation.

A draft document with final recommendations will be finalized next month. But it could take years until the guidelines are fully revised, according to an official of the NSC.

Around 80,000 people were forced to leave their homes in a 20-km radius area from the Fukushima plant. Some more 30,000 people left from the recommended evacuation zone, between 20 and 30 kilometers around the plant.


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