Residents within 5km of the Sendai nuclear plant in Kagoshima were given potassium iodide tablets to keep on hand in case there is an accident at the plant. The NRA new rules expect these tablets to be pre-distributed to residents. After the Fukushima nuclear disaster most people did not receive this tablets due to government confusion and the inability to get the stockpiles to the impacted areas in time.
The NHK report appeared to show residents being given only 2 tablets. One is needed per day per person. Two days may not be enough time to get residents to safety depending on traffic and road damage. It was also not reported how the use of the pills was explained to people. The pills can give some protection to the thyroid from iodine 131 uptake. They do not protect people from radiation in general.
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