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State offers anti-radiation tablets to people near nuke plants

By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wkar/local-wkar-859404.mp3

LANSING, MI – Michigan is stockpiling a supply of anti-radiation tablets to help protect people within 10 miles of a nuclear plant in the event of an accident. People can get a one-day supply from a local pharmacy now that Michigan's joined a federal program to get the potassium iodide pills. They help protect from radiation damage to the thyroid gland.

Janet Olzewski is the director of the Michigan Department of Community Health. "There's nothing about this that should be assumed to state that the plants are somehow unsafe at this point in time," Olzewski says. "This is merely good public health practice, just another measure of prevention that people can take advantage of."

Olzewski says the pills are no substitute for evacuation or seeking shelter from fallout in the event of a nuclear accident. Michigan has three nuclear plants - The D. C. Cook plant in Bridgman, the Fermi Two plant in downriver Michigan, and the Palisades plant near South Haven.

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